Marine Biology

, Volume 117, Issue 2, pp 227–233

Genetic differentiation of Texas Gulf Coast populations of the blue crab Callinectes sapidus

  • L. M. Kordos
  • R. S. Burton

DOI: 10.1007/BF00345667

Cite this article as:
Kordos, L.M. & Burton, R.S. Marine Biology (1993) 117: 227. doi:10.1007/BF00345667


Allelic frequencies at three polymorphic, enzyme-encoding gene loci (GOT-2, EST-1, EST-2) were determined for Callinectes sapidus (Rathbun) megalopae and adults sampled along the Texas coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Significant temporal and spatial variation was observed at all three loci. Primary findings included: (1) megalopal allelic frequencies often differed significantly from those observed among neighboring adult populations; (2) larval allelic frequencies appeared to vary seasonally, with populations showing sharp differences in the summer months but tending to be more homogeneous in winter; (3) allelic frequencies among adult populations were significantly heterogeneous, but only one locus (EST-2) showed significant temporal variation; (4) juvenile and adult crabs sampled within one bay showed no size-specific differences in allelic frequencies. The spatial heterogeneity in allelic frequencies suggests that interpopulation gene flow is not sufficient to overcome population differentiation resulting from genetic drift and/or natural selection. Temporal variation in larval allelic frequencies suggests seasonal changes in larval source populations which may result from population differences in spawning season or developmental times or from seasonal changes in coastal current patterns.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. M. Kordos
    • 1
  • R. S. Burton
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of HoustonHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Marine Biology Research Division 0202, Scripps Institution of OceanographyUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA