Genetic isolation and inbreeding

To: <>
Subject: Genetic isolation and inbreeding
From: "Andrew Thelander" <>
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 2010 08:03:40 +1000
Hi all


This is perhaps related to the thread about ancestral species.  We sometimes
read about a species being brought back from the brink of extinction with a
very low number of individuals left.  And we also often read about genetic
isolation and inbreeding.  For example, Wingspan recently published an
article about the Mission Beach cassowaries referring to threats such as
habitat loss and road-kill but not referring at all to genetic inbreeding.
Yet, I have heard from a number of sources that the main threat to the MB
birds (who have access to banana and paw paw plantations for feeding - I
have seen them doing this) is the likelihood of inbreeding through their
genetic isolation.


Nick L recently saw the Albert lyrebirds on Mt Tamborine - I have heard that
that population is doomed due to its genetic isolation.


So where does the truth lie?  Perhaps some of our scientific members might
have some comments?  When does inbreeding and genetic isolation become a
concern?  Or can a population always come back from a very low bank of






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