Genetic diversity and genetic divergence were investigated in the landlocked goby Rhinogobius sp. YB by analysis of seven microsatellite DNA loci and the mtDNA control region sequence, and were compared with those of the closely related amphidromous species Rhinogobius sp. DA. Samples of Rhinogobius sp. YB and Rhinogobius sp. DA were collected from seven and four rivers, respectively. All pairwise Fst tests based on microsatellite DNA showed significant genetic differences, except for one pair of populations of Rhinogobius sp. DA (P<0.00064, α=78). The average Nei's genetic distance was 0.616 in Rhinogobius sp. YB and 0.394 in Rhinogobius sp. DA. Forty-two haplotypes were detected in both species, and almost all Rhinogobius sp. YB populations included different haplotypes. The means of allelic richness, Ho, and He in Rhinogobius sp. YB (2.057, 0.149, and 0.156, respectively) were significantly lower than in Rhinogobius sp. DA (4.868, 0.366, and 0.403, respectively; P<0.05). The high genetic divergence and low genetic diversity in Rhinogobius sp. YB may have resulted from repeated colonizations of rivers by different founders. Efforts to conserve genetic resources should take these evolutionarily significant units (ESU) of Rhinogobius sp. YB into account. The genetic markers used in this study provide simple and highly informative indicators for Rhinogobius sp. YB population management.
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