The contact points of four karyotypic races (St. Petersburg, Moscow, Seliger and West Dvina) of the common shrew Sorex araneus L. were studied at the Valdai Hills (European Russia) in an area unimpeded by geographic barriers. The populations of the races are separated by narrow hybrid zones that represent the most complex heterozygous hybrid karyotypes. At these points of contact, the morphometric differentiation of karyotype races was examined in 12 cranial measurements in 190 shrews of a known karyotype. A comparison of the mean values in studied samples of immature shrews revealed statistically significant differences and the correlation of some measurements which describe the level of musculus temporalis. It has been proposed that morphometric differences in the karyotypic races were preserved and accumulated because of a 50% reduction of the frequencies of hybrids. The deviation from the Hardy-Weinberg ration in the frequencies of the genotype and haploid sets of chromosomes in the hybrid zones can be attributed to a number of fatalities of hybrid embryos or the nonrandom mating of karyotypic races. The ethological isolation might arise in the evolution of some karyotypic races from the reduced fitness of the hybrids.
Russian Journal of Genetics – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 21, 2013
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