The intrapopulation polymorphism of the pine marten (Martes martes L. 1758) was assessed on the basis of studying five samplings of skulls, three of which were collected on the same territory at different times. The geographical distance between the three sampling areas varied from 60 to 240 km. Study of the material using the phenetic (250 skulls), morphometric (151 skulls), and molecular genetic (21 skin samples) approaches allowed us to characterize the pine marten as a species with a low level of polymorphism. The genetic diversity (π = 0.0069 ± 0.0041 and H = 0.90 ± 0.039) is determined by ancient demographic processes that took place in the Pleistocene and Holocene and are related to the ice-age history of this species, its expansion, and the formation of the population on the territory under study. Low levels of phenetic (μ = 1.48 ± 0.056, h = 0.14 ± 0.033) and morphological (CV = 3.37 ± 0.41) diversity as well as a low level of sexual dimorphism (Isd = 9.4) indicate that the pine marten occupies a specific and relatively narrow ecological niche and is involved in weak competition with smaller mustelid species.
Biology Bulletin – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 24, 2018
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