Tephritid fruit flies, an important pest of horticulture worldwide, are increasingly targeted for control or eradication by large-scale releases of sterile flies of the same species. For each species treated, strains must be domesticated for mass rearing to provide sufficiently large numbers of individuals for releases. Increases in productivity of domesticated tephritid strains are well documented, but there have been few systematic studies of the genetic consequences of domestication in tephritids. Here, we used nine DNA microsatellite markers to monitor changes in genetic diversity during the early generations of domestication in replicated lines of the fruit fly Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae). The observed changes in heterozygosity and allelic richness were compared with the expected changes in heterozygosity generated by a stochastic simulation including genetic drift but not selection. The results showed that repeatable genetic bottlenecks occur in the early generations and that selection occurs in the later generations. Furthermore, using the same simulation, we show that there is inadvertent selection for increased productivity for the entire life on a mass-rearing colony, in addition to intentional selection for increased productivity. That additional selection results from the common practice of establishing the next generation of the breeding colony from a small proportion of one day's pupae collection (the pupal raffle). That selection occurs during all generations and acts only on fecundity variation. Practical methods to counter that unavoidable loss of genetic diversity during the domestication process in B. tryoni are discussed.
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Vol. 105 • No. 3