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Epidemiological models are useful tools for management to predict and control wildlife disease outbreaks. Dispersal behaviours of the vector are critical in determining patterns of disease spread, and key variables in epidemiological models, yet they are difficult to measure. Raccoon rabies is enzootic over the eastern seaboard of North America and(More)
The correlation of landscape features with genetic discontinuities reveals barriers to dispersal that can contribute to understanding present and future spread of wildlife diseases. This knowledge can then be used for targeting control efforts. The impact of natural barriers on raccoon dispersal was assessed through genetic analysis of samples from two(More)
Many highly mobile species, such as migratory birds, can move and disperse over long distances, yet exhibit high levels of population genetic structuring. Although movement capabilities may enable dispersal, gene flow may be restricted by behavioural constraints such as philopatry. In the present study, we examined patterns of genetic differentiation across(More)
Conservation strategies have a tendency to discount range peripheries, but recent evidence suggests that range edges may be important to species persistence by harboring genetic variants not found in core distributions. Wolverines in Canada are recognized as existing in two populations—an endangered eastern population and an extant western population(More)
We examined the mitochondrial genetic structure of American white pelicans (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) to: 1) verify or refute whether American white pelicans are panmictic and 2) understand if any lack of genetic structure is the result of contemporary processes or historical phenomena. Sequence analysis of mitochondrial DNA control region haplotypes of(More)
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) presents a unique system to explore links between genetic diversity and pathogens, as diversity within MHC is maintained in part by pathogen driven selection. While the majority of wildlife MHC studies have investigated species that are of conservation concern, here we characterize MHC variation in a common and(More)
A landscape genetic simulation modelling approach is used to understand factors affecting raccoon rabies disease spread in southern Ontario, Canada. Using the Ontario Rabies Model, we test the hypothesis that landscape configuration (shape of available habitat) affects dispersal, as indicated by genetic structuring. We simulated range expansions of raccoons(More)
Spatially explicit capture–recapture (SECR) models are gaining popularity for estimating densities of mammalian carnivores. They use spatially explicit encounter histories of individual animals to estimate a detection probability function described by two parameters: magnitude (g 0), and spatial scale (σ). Carnivores exhibit heterogeneous detection(More)
Variation within major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes is important in recognizing pathogens and initiating an immune response. These genes are relevant in enhancing our understanding of how species cope with rapid environmental changes and concomitant fluctuations in selective pressures such as invasive, infectious diseases. Disease-based models(More)
Mate-choice theory predicts different optimal mating systems depending on resource availability and habitat stability. Regions with limited resources are thought to promote monogamy. We tested predictions of monogamy in a social rodent, the hoary marmot (Marmota caligata), at the northern climatic extreme of its distribution. Mating systems, social(More)