Landscape genetics in mammals

Claudine Montgelard, Saliha Zenboudji, Anne Laure Ferchaud, Véronique Arnal, Bettine Jansen Van Vuuren

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


The focus of this review is on landscape genetics (LG), a relatively new discipline that arose approximately 10 years ago. LG spans the interface between population genetics and landscape ecology and thus incorporates the concepts, methods, and tools from both disciplines. On the basis of an understanding of the spatial distribution of genetic diversity, LG aims to explain how landscape and environmental characteristics influence microevolutionary processes and metapopulation dynamics, including gene flow (i.e., connectivity) and selection (i.e., local adaptations). LG is concerned with events that occurred during the recent time scale, and the individual is the operational unit. As a discipline that combines spatial genetic diversity with ecological features, LG is able to address questions relating to different evolutionary processes. We illustrate some of these here using examples taken from mammals: population structure; gene flow and the identification of barriers; fragmentation, connectivity, and corridors; local adaptation and selection; there are two different questions: applications in conservation genetics; and future developments in LG. We will then present the methods and tools commonly used in the different steps of LG analyses: the genetic and landscape sampling, the quantification of genetic variation, the characterization of spatial landscape structures, and finally, the correlation between genetic patterns and landscape features.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-157
Number of pages19
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2014


  • genetic pattern
  • landscape features
  • sampling
  • scale
  • spatial structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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