OSR Journal of Student Research


Geographic isolation and habitat fragmentation can cause a population to undergo independent evolutionary trajectories. Stream dwelling vertebrates such as the minnows belonging to the Cyprinidae family, one of the most genetically variable and geographically distributed groups, are excellent models for examining the genetic effects of population isolation and substructure. Rhinichthys osculus, a freshwater minnow, is a local species of concern that inhabits the Santa Ana and San Gabriel watershed systems within the Southern California region. 23 polymorphic microsatellite loci were characterized and identified for Rhinichthys osculus in conjunction with the Savannah River Ecology Lab. These microsatellite loci have been visualized in local lab settings. Currently over 150 samples of Rhinichthys osculus are being genotyped for each of the microsatellite loci to examine various population genetic parameters. The statistical analyses of the data will assist in potential conservation management.