Research information on Electrophoritic Analysis of Enzymes:


David B. Wake and Kay P. Yanev, 1986.
Geographic variation in allozymes in a 'ring species,' the plethodontid salamander Ensatina eschscholtzi of western North America.
Evolution 40(4),1986,pp 702-715


The ring species Ensatina eschscholtzi (a plethodontid salamander) of western North America has a circle of subspecies surrounding the Central Valley of California which come into contact and are sympatric in southern California. We examined 26 proteins in 19 populations (maximum of 10 specimens per population) collected throughout the range in order to gain an understanding of the degree of differentiation in the group. Allozyme differentiation is profound, with genetic distances in excess of 0.5 (Rogers or Nei) between populations. Naturally hybridizing populations differ by genetic distances greater than 0.4. (see Genetic distances map Two general classes of color morphs, blotched and unblotched, are segregated geographically, but they do not form discreet genetic units. Both are deeply differentiated, and genetic distances among populations of either class exceed those measured between the classes where they are sympatric in southern California. This study disclosed little evidence of gene exchange around the ring of populations and sampling of many additional populations in regions between populations sampled thus far will be required to determine whether smooth intergradation occurs. Although distances measured exceed those between some co-occurring species of plethodontid salamanders, we find no evidence of borders between cryptic species.

Genetic distances map

More information available on Ensatina eschscholtzi:

Esatina Home Page