Genetic isolation and inbreeding

To: Birding-aus <>
Subject: Genetic isolation and inbreeding
From: John Leonard <>
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 2010 10:01:52 +1100
I would have thought that with species with sub-populations in danger
of inbreeding it would be relatively easy to capture individuals from
larger populations and introduce them into the smaller ones
occasionally to maintain diversity. For example you might capture an
Albert's in the Border Ranges and release it on Tambourine.

John Leonard

On 2 November 2010 09:10, Tony Keene <> wrote:
> Hi Andrew,
> It's not so much a problem for a lot of other species as they have quite a 
> range of genetic diversity within their populations, so you can get to a 
> fairly small number of individuals and not end up with them being called 
> Cleetus and playing banjoes (what is the plural of banjo?). However, if a 
> species has been reduced to a very small number a few times previously, it 
> tends to wipe out that diversity - we can see that in humans and domestic 
> cats, both of which were probably reduced to around a couple of thousand at a 
> few points in history. Even then, with a limited genetic stock (it's often 
> been said that one troop of chimpanzees has more diversity within it than the 
> entire human race), it would take only 32 individuals (and very careful 
> management of who was breeding with who for a few generations) to ensure that 
> serious genetic problems don't occur.
> However, I don't know the background of the species you mention, so I 
> couldn't help on that...
> Cheers,
> Tony

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