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SFS Annual Meeting

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MOLECULAR ANALYSIS OF EXUVIAE TO DETERMINE SPECIES IDENTITY AND POPULATION STRUCTURE OF GOMPHID DRAGONFLIES

Dragonfly exuviae are a convenient source of information about dragonfly populations. However, the exuviae of some species can be difficult to distinguish. For example, Gomphurus ventricosus, a dragonfly with low and possibly declining populations closely resembles Gomphurus fraternus, which has relatively stable populations where the species co-occur. DNA from the exuviae could confirm specimen identification and contribute to better information on population status than adult observations alone. Additionally, the DNA may provide information on population structure: the relatedness of members of a single species from different sites. To determine the feasibility of obtaining DNA from dragonfly exuviae, I extracted DNA from exuviae for eight Gomphid species collected from nine rivers in Wisconsin. After performing PCR with Gomphid primers, I used an agarose gel to check for amplification and contamination. I will sequence the amplified fragments of the gene for cytochrome c oxidase subunit I to confirm the identification of each specimen. I will use separate primers to amplify microsatellite regions of the DNA to examine the relatedness of dragonflies among sites. Thus, I will demonstrate how DNA from dragonfly exuviae can be used for species identification and population genetics.

Cora Bilhorn (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Wisconsin - Parkside, bilho003@rangers.uwp.edu;


Jessica Orlofske (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Wisconsin-Parkside, orlofske@uwp.edu;