Date of Award

12-2017

Document Type

Thesis

Primary Advisor

R. Dale Hembree

Secondary Advisor

Bryan E. Brokaw

Committee Reader

Joshua Brokaw

Abstract

The feral cat population at Abilene Christian University is of primary concern to the community in terms of a wildlife management perspective. Due to the Trap-Neuter-Return program (TNR), initiated to maintain the cat colony, reduced genetic variability is highly probable. As a result, the suspected narrowed gene pool could create immunocompromised animals susceptible to certain diseases affecting the population. Some of these diseases could also have zoonotic implications for society. The effectiveness of TNR was assessed by comparing the DNA sequence obtained from the mitochondrial DNA control region between 17 cats of the feral population and 20 independently collected cats from Taylor Jones Humane Society, the Abilene Animal Shelter, and a handful of housecats. Blood samples of 1 mL were drawn from each cat. DNA was extracted from whole blood samples and amplified utilizing PCR techniques. Haplotype networks of the genetic material created a baseline for comparison of non-related cats to the colony on campus.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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