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J Phycol. 2014 Dec;50(6):968-74. doi: 10.1111/jpy.12237. Epub 2014 Oct 16.

Long distance kelp rafting impacts seaweed biogeography in the Northeast Pacific: the kelp conveyor hypothesis.

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1
Department of Biology, Centre for Environmental and Molecular Algal Research, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB, Canada, E3B 5A3.

Abstract

Routine DNA barcoding of the Haida Gwaii seaweed flora revealed "endemic species" attributed initially to this region's past as a glacial refugium. However, subsequent barcode records from central California rapidly eroded this list leaving species characterized by disjunct distributions (DD) between California and Haida Gwaii. This observation prompted a more detailed look at species for California and British Columbia and revealed that 33 of 180 DNA-barcoded genetic groups in common between these regions (~18%) predominantly displayed DD between California and northern British Columbia. A previous discovery that a red abalone shell found in Haida Gwaii (far north of its range) had a float-bearing kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana) holdfast attached to it prompted a closer consideration of the COI-5P barcode data in support of a "kelp conveyor hypothesis." The hypothesis posits that there has been a net migration of Californian species to northern British Columbia the vector being species growing on substrata carried along with kelp rafts on the winter Davidson Current.

PMID:
26988778
DOI:
10.1111/jpy.12237

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