Evolutionary history, population genetics, and gene flow in the common rosefinch (Carpodacus erythrinus)

Alexandra Pavlova, Robert M. Zink, Sievert Rohwer

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We analyzed sequences of two mitochondrial DNA gene regions (control region and ND2) from 186 specimens obtained from 17 Eurasian localities covering most of the distribution of the common rosefinch to assess phylogeographic structure. Populations possessed a high level of nucleotide diversity relative to many other Palearctic species, suggesting that rosefinch populations are relatively old and possess high effective sizes. Mismatch distributions suggested that many localities experienced past population expansions, which are older than those expected for post-Pleistocene climate warming and reforestation of Eurasia. Our Φst analysis revealed that 12.4% of total genetic variation was distributed among localities owing in part to the existence of three incompletely isolated groups: southwestern (subspecies C. e. kubanensis), northeastern (subspecies C. e. grebnitskii), and northwestern (subspecies C. e. erythrinus and C. e. ferghanensis). The three groups are not reciprocally monophyletic which suggests that they were formed relatively recently. Gene flow among groups is restricted. Coalescence analysis indicated dispersal asymmetry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)669-681
Number of pages13
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Carpodacus erythrinus
  • Common rosefinch
  • Gene flow
  • mtDNA
  • Phylogeography
  • Population genetics

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