Understanding Threats, Genetic Diversity, and Conservation Options for Wild Rice

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$97,000
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$98,000
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
Recipient
University of Minnesota
Recipient Type
Public College/University
Status
Completed
Start Date
July 2011
End Date
June 2014
Activity Type
Analysis/Interpretation
Inventory
Research
Counties Affected
Statewide
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04o
Appropriation Language

$97,000 the first year and $98,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota to research the genetic diversity of wild rice population throughout Minnesota for use in related conservation and restoration efforts. This appropriation is contingent upon demonstration of review and cooperation with the Native American tribal nations in Minnesota. Equipment purchased with this appropriation must be available for future publicly funded projects at no charge except for typical operating expenses. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$97,000
Direct expenses
$97,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
2.68
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04o
Appropriation Language

$97,000 the first year and $98,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota to research the genetic diversity of wild rice population throughout Minnesota for use in related conservation and restoration efforts. This appropriation is contingent upon demonstration of review and cooperation with the Native American tribal nations in Minnesota. Equipment purchased with this appropriation must be available for future publicly funded projects at no charge except for typical operating expenses. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$98,000
Direct expenses
$98,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
2.68
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Project Overview

PROJECT OVERVIEW
The ecological, economic, and cultural and historical values embodied by wild rice is said to be unmatched by any other native plant species in Minnesota. However, naturally occurring wild rice in the state now faces a multitude of threats, such as loss of habitat from development, competition from invasive species, impacts from mining and other industrial activity, and hydrologic changes in lakes, rivers, and streams. It is recognized that to preserve wild rice in Minnesota it is critical to maintain its genetic diversity, yet knowledge of genetic diversity in wild rice is limited. Scientists at the University of Minnesota's Department of Plant Biology are using this appropriation to study the genetic diversity of wild rice in Minnesota in order to enhance options and inform best practices for wild rice protection and restoration.

OVERALL PROJECT OUTCOME AND RESULTS
Wild rice (Zizania palustris L.) was studied using DNA-based single sequence repeats and the tools of bioinformatics to determine the genetic diversity of wild rice among 70 populations across the state of Minnesota. This study had two objectives: 1) to document genetic diversity of wild rice populations; and 2) assess the usefulness of genetic information for the conservation of this important wild species in Minnesota. Results showed that genetic diversity of the populations in Minnesota is relatively high with a range of 0.37 to 0.73 in heterozygosity and a mean of 0.54. Hetereozygosity can range between 0.0 to 1.0 indicating that genetic diversity among wild rice populations is reasonably high. This also means that many populations are quite unique from a genetic standpoint. Two genetic phylograms are presented. These are figures that illustrate the genetic relationships among the populations using two different genetic models. Examples are given to illustrate how genetics may be used when restoring or rebuilding populations of wild rice.

PROJECT RESULTS USE AND DISSEMINATION
This project will be disseminated via a website report and via seminars and presentations both nationally and regionally. The data will be useful to resource managers across the state who are managing populations of wild rice. The genetics of wild rice in Minnesota has not been explored in detail, thus resource managers will now have another tool to use when making decisions about restoration of wild rice populations. The results will be published in a nationally recognized peer reviewed journal.

Project Details
Project Manager
First Name
David
Last Name
Biesboer
Organization Name
U of MN
Street Address
250 BioSci, 1445 Gortner Ave
City
St Paul
State
MN
Zip Code
55345
Phone
(612) 625-1799
Email
biesboer@umn.edu