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Letter to the Editor

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The King Rail Rallus elegans (Audubon) has experienced population declines of 4.6 % per year on average since the 1960s. Wetland loss, most severely affecting inland marshes, has significantly reduced this species' distribution to the coastal margins of its historic range. Polymorphic microsatellite markers were generated by 454 pyrosequencing of genomic DNA from King Rails, and Clapper Rails R. longirostris from Louisiana after AFLP enrichment and barcoding of restriction fragment cut sites across individuals. Of 1,419 microsatellite-containing sequences, 20 hypervariable microsatellite loci with up to 20 different alleles were identified at the alignment stage. We characterized nine loci, tested variability in 45 Atlantic coast King Rail samples, and detected 4-19 alleles per locus. Cross-species amplification revealed variability in the Virginia Rail, R. limicola, and Sora, Porzana carolina. These loci will be useful for studying secretive marsh rails, many of which are threatened or endangered. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

Conservation Genetics Resources

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