Conservation genetics

Richard Frankham*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary/reference book


Conservation genetics is the application of genetics to reduce the risk of population and species extinctions. It deals with genetic factors causing rarity, endangerment and extinction (inbreeding and loss of genetic diversity), genetic management to minimize these impacts, the use of genetic markers to help resolve taxonomic uncertainties in threatened species, to understand their biology, and to detect illegal hunting or trade in threatened species. If genetic factors are ignored, conservation programs for threatened species may fail.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of ecology
EditorsBrian Fath
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780444641304
ISBN (Print)9780444637680
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Effective population size
  • Evolutionary potential
  • Extinction vortex
  • Fragmented population
  • Gene flow
  • Genetic drift
  • Genetic load
  • Inbreeding
  • Inbreeding depression
  • Kinship
  • Loss of genetic diversity
  • Mutation-selection balance
  • Outbreeding depression
  • Taxonomy
  • Wildlife forensics

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