Queen Charlotte Islands (queen + charlotte_island)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts


EVOLUTION, Issue 9 2003
C. A. Bergstrom
Abstract Assessment of geographical patterns in fluctuating asymmetry (small, random differences between sides of bilateral characters) among populations shows promise as a tool to resolve the relative biomechanical importance of traits, in addition to being a possible indicator of habitat quality. We used 115 endemic freshwater populations of threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) from Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands), British Columbia, Canada, to explore the degree of concordance between geographical variation of asymmetry in a predator defense structure (bony lateral plates) and geographical variation in several indirect measures of predation regime as well as several abiotic habitat variables. We found a geographical cline in the population frequency of lateral plate asymmetries, with reduced asymmetry in the southern clear-water regions of the archipelago characterized by long reaction distances and greater chance of capture by predators, and elevated asymmetry in the northern stained-water regions with poor visibility and low chances of capture. Lateral plate asymmetry was strongly correlated with expression of several defensive armor traits, including total plate numbers among populations, mean cross-sectional diameter of stickleback with the dorsal and pelvic spines erect, and mean degree of overlap between the plates and spine supports. There were no significant correlations between frequency of asymmetric fish and any of our abiotic habitat variables. Stickleback with structural plate asymmetries had fewer trout-induced scars than symmetric fish in the significant majority of populations, and there was a decrease in structural plate asymmetry with age in stained-water habitats, suggesting that trout predators may be selectively removing asymmetric fish in some lakes. This study provides evidence that geographical variation in developmental stability of threespine stickleback, as seen in the frequencies of asymmetry, reflects differences among populations in the importance of structural defenses to fitness rather than differences in habitat quality, and that asymmetry may be a target of selection by predators in wild populations. [source]

Establishing climate,growth relationships for yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) in the northeast Pacific using a dendrochronological approach

Abstract We applied dendrochronology (tree-ring) methods to develop multidecadal growth chronologies from the increment widths of yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) otoliths. Chronologies were developed for the central California coast, a site just north of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, and at Bowie Seamount west of the Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia. At each site, synchronous growth patterns were matched among otoliths via the process of cross-dating, ensuring that the correct calendar year was assigned to all increments. Each time series of growth-increment measurements was divided by the values predicted by a best-fit negative exponential function, thereby removing age-related trends. These detrended time series were averaged into a master chronology for each site, and chronologies were correlated with monthly averages of sea surface temperatures, upwelling, the Northern Oscillation Index, and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. The two northern growth chronologies positively correlated with indices of warm ocean conditions, especially from the prior summer through the spring of the current year. During the same period, the California chronology positively correlated with indices of cool ocean conditions, indicating an opposing productivity regime for yelloweye rockfish between the California Current and the Gulf of Alaska. Overall, this study demonstrates how tree-ring techniques can be applied to quickly develop annually resolved chronologies and establish climate,growth relationships across various temporal and spatial scales. [source]

Lateral plate asymmetry, diet and parasitism in threespine stickleback

T. E. Reimchen
Individuals with random left,right departures from bilateral symmetry are predicted to exhibit fitness reduction including increased parasitism. In an insular lake population of stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) from the Queen Charlotte Islands, Western Canada, phenotypes with high or low number of lateral bony plates exhibited increased plate asymmetry relative to modal phenotypes. Asymmetric lateral plate phenotypes had increased prevalence and to a lesser extent intensity of parasitism relative to symmetric individuals, suggesting that differences in genetic resistance to pathogens contributed to unequal parasitism. The effect occurred mainly in the larger adults and during the warmest season, which may be due to the high metabolic costs incurred during the summer breeding season. Dietary differences between symmetric and asymmetric phenotypes were also detected and could contribute to unequal infection rates by mediating exposure to infected prey items. Our study, which is one of the first long-term field assessments of asymmetry and parasitism, yields results that are consistent with studies linking asymmetry to reduced fitness and indicate that lateral plate asymmetry can be an indicator of poor individual quality, despite its apparent directionality. [source]

Glacial vicariance in the Pacific Northwest: evidence from a lodgepole pine mitochondrial DNA minisatellite for multiple genetically distinct and widely separated refugia

Abstract The Canadian side of the Pacific Northwest was almost entirely covered by ice during the last glacial maximum, which has induced vicariance and genetic population structure for several plant and animal taxa. Lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Dougl. ex. Loud.) has a wide latitudinal and longitudinal distribution in the Pacific Northwest. Our main objective was to identify relictual signatures of glacial vicariance in the population structure of the species and search for evidence of distinct glacial refugia in the Pacific Northwest. A maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA minisatellite-like marker was used to decipher haplotype diversity in 91 populations of lodgepole pine located across the natural range. Overall population differentiation was sizeable (GST = 0.365 and RST = 0.568). Four relatively homogeneous groups of populations, possibly representative of as many genetically distinct glacial populations, were identified for the two main subspecies, ssp. latifolia and ssp. contorta. For ssp. contorta, one glacial lineage is suggested to have been located at high latitudes and possibly off the coast of mainland British Columbia (BC), while the other is considered to have been located south of the ice sheet along the Pacific coast. For ssp. latifolia, two genetically distinct glacial populations probably occurred south of the ice sheet: in the area bounded by the Cascades and Rocky Mountains ranges, and on the eastern side of the Rockies. A possible fifth refugium located in the Yukon may have also been present for ssp. latifolia. Zones of contact between these ancestral lineages were also apparent in interior and northern BC. These results indicate the role of the Queen Charlotte Islands and the Alexander Archipelago as a refugial zone for some Pacific Northwest species and the vicariant role played by the Cascades and the American Rocky Mountains during glaciation. [source]

Historic marine invertebrate species inventory: case study of a science baseline towards establishing a marine conservation area

N.A. Sloan
Abstract (1)Assessing species diversity is a basic requirement for conservation, and protecting biodiversity is a major goal of marine area conservation. (2)A case study is presented on the development of a literature-based (1870s to 2000), museum collection-based, georeferenced inventory of marine invertebrate species of the Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands) region, Canada. (3)Database structure and quality assurance are described, along with including indigenous people's words for species towards using traditional knowledge within cooperative marine conservation area management. (4)The utility of this type of inventory is proposed as a starting point for gathering regional biodiversity knowledge, and facilitating addition of other knowledge types, towards marine area conservation. Copyright 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]