We studied the epigenetic variability of the Eurasian otter Lutra lutra from 12 European localities and Kamchatka Peninsula based on 15 nonmetric traits in 692 skulls. The samples from Eastern Germany are close to each other geographically, have small epigenetic distances, and can represent one otter population. Other European samples group with each other and can have a common origin of the European otter populations from one refuge in the post-glacial period. The epigenetic distances for the Kamchatka sample have a similar level of distances between the European samples. This can reflect the low geographical divergence of otter populations within a species area and can be associated with species ecology.
Russian Journal of Ecology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 22, 2015
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