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Anderson MJ 2013, 'Genetic connectivity within Eastern Australian humpback whales and their relationship to adjacent South Pacific and Indian Ocean stocks', PhD thesis, Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW.

Copyright MJ Anderson 2013


The humpback whales (HBW) that migrate along the Eastern Australian (EA) coast are thought to be genetically distinct from those along the Western Australian (WA) coast and in the South Pacific (SP). Here, microsatellites and mitochondrial DNA are used to analyse connectivity within EA HBW and their relationship to adjacent stocks. The results show EA to be an independent sub-stock from WA and the SP, although a moderate degree of mixing occurs. Isolation by distance was detected in HBW ranging from WA eastward to Colombia, with stocks closest to each other more similar than those more distant from one another. Heterogeneity was also detected in EA HBW, most likely from SP males. Sampling of the EA breeding grounds is recommended.