The Celtic Sea is the multidirectionl focus for the expansive dispersal of hake (Merluccius merluccius) in the Atlantic
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Bay of Biscay
This study describes the global pattern of connectivity among European hake populations inferred from genetic markers. Two methodological issues were key to resolve this structure. First, the implementation of the widest sampling effort so far reported in this species. Second, the use of nuclear DNA and mitochondrial DNA to achieve a balance d view of recent and ancient population histories, respectively. The present genetic scenario is supported by the statistical power of the sample/marker system (ranging 0.800 – 0.880) and an acceptable associated type I error (ranging 0.044 – 0.066) in all simulations assayed under different priors and methods. We show that 1) the main focus of a multidirectional hake dispersal in the Atlantic is the spawning ground of the Celtic Sea, 2) a global connectivity operates across the Atlantic including the North Sea and the Canarian Sea, and 3) the historic divide between the two allopatric subpopulations of hake is located at the Almerí ...