Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.509133
Title: Understanding the causes of reproductive failure in two rare Scottish plants, Linnaea borealis L. and Spiranthes romanzoffiana Cham. and the implications for future conservation management
Author: Scobie, Andrew Rutherford
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2009
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Abstract:
The pollinator spectrum, diversity of flower colour, natural pollination and fruit set levels were examined in Scottish L. borealis patches.  Flowers were visited by a diverse spectrum of insect pollinators but, despite high natural pollination levels, fruit set was very low in the majority of patches examined.  The breeding system of L. borealis was confirmed as highly self-incompatible and limited compatible mate availability was identified as the cause of reproductive failure.  Due to the limited pollen dispersal capabilities of flies which dominate the pollinator spectrum, isolation from pollen exchange between compatible mates began at very short distances.  A diversity of compatible mates situated within close proximity (<6 m) was shown to be the key requirement for high natural fruiting success in L. borealis.  Cross-pollination between neighbouring L. borealis patches resulted in high fruiting success suggesting that transplantation of compatible mates into isolated patches could restore their reproductive success. Natural pollination levels were generally high on Colonsay and a very low, but consistent, level of capsule and seed set was recorded in most years.  Capsules produced by Colonsay plants contained very low quantities of seed (<100/capsule) and high numbers of empty testa, and seed set was extremely low (<1%).  Severe reproductive failure was evident and the cause was attributed to self-incompatibility and/or inbreeding depression.  Seed set was also very low for all of the crosses made within Scotland, even between the two distinct genetic groups.  The high levels of seed set achieved following crossing of Scottish and North American plants suggest that restoration of reproductive success in Scotland may require the introduction of some North American genes.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.509133  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Rare plants ; Plant conservation
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