Genetic monitoring of the pool frog and the edible frog in Luxembourg


Nowadays, most animal species can be identified genetically by sequencing a fragment of the mitochondrial barcoding gene COI. However, for some species, this method is not applicable due to a more complex genetic make-up, often due to hybridisation.

One of these exceptions are the green frogs (pool frog – Pelophylax lessonae, edible frog – P. kl. esculentus and marsh frog – P. ridibundus). This group of frogs has an especially complex genetic composition due to hemiclonal hybridisation and polyploidisation.

To establish a genetic monitoring tool-kit for green frogs in Luxembourg, we will first apply ddRAD sequencing to a wide range of populations from the whole country. This high-throughput sequencing based method will be used to generate hundreds of genome-wide genetic markers. The resulting dataset will allow to identify individuals on species level and to assess their ploidy. Furthermore, it will enable an estimation of the genetic diversity of the two common species in Luxembourg, the pool frog and the edible frog.

In a second step of the project, these genetic data will be used to establish genetic markers for standard genetic monitoring in Luxembourg and to develop recommendation guidelines for their application.

Foto Frosch
Pelophylax sp. (water frog) – Peppange – 09.05.2018 © Hannah Weigand.

Project status

Project granted by the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Infrastructure, Luxembourg. Duration: one year (15.04.2018 – 14.04.2019).

Host institution: Fondation faune-flore @ Centre de recherche scientifique, Musée national d’histoire naturelle.


Hannah Weigand
Musée national d’histoire naturelle
Centre de recherche scientifique
Zoologie des vertébrés
24, rue Münster
L-2160 Luxembourg
phone: (+352) 462240 212


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