Population genetic structure of the short-beaked common dolphin from the Black Sea and the Turkish Straits System

Tonay A. M. , UZUN B., DEDE A. , Amaha Öztürk A. , Danyer E., Aytemiz Danyer I., ...More

MITOCHONDRIAL DNA PART A, vol.31, no.6, pp.257-264, 2020 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 31 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/24701394.2020.1788008
  • Title of Journal : MITOCHONDRIAL DNA PART A
  • Page Numbers: pp.257-264


Our study aims to assess the population connectivity, evolutionary history, and conservation status of the short-beaked common dolphin in the Black Sea and Turkish Straits System (TSS). We also include DNA sequences from the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea to provide a regional perspective to our localized study. Analysis of 366 base pairs of mitochondrial DNA D-loop fragments from 37 samples collected from short-beaked common dolphins in the Black Sea, TSS, and Aegean Sea revealed 13 haplotypes, eight of which have not been previously reported. While analysis of samples archived on GenBank revealed 89 different haplotypes across the region. The haplotype network contains two main peripheral groups that include individuals from all locations. Haplotypes from the Atlantic Ocean are scattered across the network and no obvious population separation was detected. Some shared haplotypes potentially indicate multi-directional colonization events of the Mediterranean Sea from the eastern Atlantic Ocean. Moreover, some less widely distributed haplotypes suggest some level of more recent genetic connectivity through the Strait of Gibraltar and the TSS and point out the importance of these straits in the dispersal of short-beaked common dolphins. The haplotype and nucleotide diversity values were lower in the Black Sea, TSS, and western Mediterranean Sea when compared to the Atlantic Ocean, supporting the expansion of Atlantic populations into the Mediterranean and the Black Seas. Differentiation was observed between the Atlantic Ocean, and the Mediterranean Sea, TSS and the Black Sea based on CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER EFst but not between Mediterranean and the Black Seas. For common dolphins, which have high dispersal potential, the protection of open seas and narrow seaways to enhance connectivity may be crucial.