, Volume 71, Issue 3, pp 375-384

The nature of inbreeding in a seed orchard of Douglas fir as shown by an efficient multilocus model

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The amounts of self-fertilization versus consanguineous matings (as measured by effective selfing) was estimated in a seed orchard of Douglas-fir, using progeny array data at six allozyme loci. The orchard is family structured, consisting several grafts (clones) and/or open-pollinated (o-p) progeny from each of several ‘plus-trees’. Population-wide selfing rates were found to be 7% for the o-p trees and 2% for the cloned trees. Estimates of mating system parameters for individual trees showed this difference for average outcrossing rate t (1) still largely remained when outcrossingpollen gene frequency p was not allowed to vary among trees and (2) disappeared when p was allowed to vary among trees. Under this joint t and p estimation, o-p trees showed both significant variation of t (based upon a one-way ANOVA grouped by common plus-tree) and significant regressions of p on ovule genotype (indicative of consanguineous matings); cloned trees showed neither. This higher rate of consanguineous mating for o-p trees might be explained by the larger and more variable size of o-p families in the orchard. Estimates of outcrossing rate t and outcrossingpollen gene frequency p were based upon a multilocus model which makes full use of the information in the data. The increased information it gives over ‘observed outcross’ models is equivalent to adding 30–50% more loci, and it gives enough degrees of freedom to jointly estimate t and p for individual trees (individual progeny arrays) under certain conditions. In addition, inclusion of megagametophyte data nearly doubles the information about the mating system of individual trees.

Communicated by P.M.A Tigerstedt