Theoretical and Applied Genetics

, 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

  • K. Ritland
  • Y. A. El-Kassaby


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.

Key words

Outcrossing Douglas fir Seed orchard Inbreeding 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Ritland
    • 1
  • Y. A. El-Kassaby
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of BotanyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.CIP Inc. Tahsis Pacific RegionSaanichtonCanada
  3. 3.University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  4. 4.Department of BotanyUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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