Conservation genetics encompasses genetic management of small populations, resolution of taxonomic uncertainties and management units, and the use of molecular genetic analyses in forensics and to understanding species' biology. The role of genetic factors in extinctions of wild populations has been controversial, but evidence now shows that they make important contributions to extinction risk. Inbreeding has been shown to cause extinctions of wild populations, computer projections indicate that inbreeding depression has important effects on extinction risk, and most threatened species show signs of genetic deterioration. Inappropriate management is likely to result if genetic factors are ignored in threatened species management.
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