What is Genetic Rescue?

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What is Genetic Rescue? Blog Image


Genetic rescue is proposed as a method to conserve Ranthambore National Park’s tiger population.

About Genetic Rescue

  • Genetic rescue is the process of increasing population growth with new genetic variation by migrating individuals into another small population (i.e., gene flow).
  • In practice, wildlife managers take individuals from a larger, healthier population, and bring them to a smaller population to introduce new variation and eventually help grow the population. 
  • This conservation strategy aims to alleviate genetic load, decrease extinction risk, and enhance the viability of endangered species and populations. 
  • It is often employed in conservation biology to mitigate the negative effects of inbreeding depression, which can occur when individuals within a population mate with close relatives, leading to decreased reproductive success and viability of offspring.
  • Genetic rescue can have both beneficial and deleterious effects, depending on factors such as the magnitude and duration of gene flow, as well as the genetic and non-genetic factors influencing population dynamics.
  • There can be risks involved with moving animals around, so it’s often thought of as a last resort.

Q1) What is a Gene?

A gene is the basic physical and functional unit of heredity. Genes are made up of DNA. Some genes act as instructions to make molecules called proteins.

Source: Conservation not enough for the highly inbred Ranthambore tigers — they require genetic rescue