Honors College Thesis

 

Population structure and genetic variation in the Hawaiian Opakapaka (Pristipomoides filamentosus): Evidence of a genetic bottleneck in offspring of a captive broodstock Public

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  • The Hawaiian Archipelago is a biologically diverse environment with dynamic interactions between human and biological populations. Political, social, and scientific communities are placing importance on sustainable management of fisheries resources throughout the islands. Many economically important bottomfish in Hawaii have declined in population size due to anthropogenic and environmental pressures. Efforts to develop stock enhancement programs to supplement wild populations are in development for several species, including the Hawaiian pink snapper, Opakapaka (Pristipomoides filamentosus). This study contributes knowledge of spawning behavior in a captive broodstock and genetic variation in spawned embryos on Oahu through population analyses. Spawning frequency in the broodstock appears to be synchronized with lunar cycles and is potentially affected by combinations of environmental parameters. This study documented low genetic diversity and heterozygosity in the captive stock offspring in comparison to other populations, raising questions on the potential success for stock enhancement initiatives. F-statistic analyses and other genetic tools reveal significantly differentiated population structure in the broodstock offspring from other populations, providing evidence for the presence of a genetic bottleneck in captive broodstock offspring. This study presents this knowledge with implications for future Opakapaka management and stock enhancement practices in Pacific bottomfish.
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