Little is known about genetic differentiation and gene flow in populations of insect species that have a high genetic variability in dispersal but lack morphologically visible morphs that disperse. These characteristics apply to the codling moth, Cydia pomonella L. (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), a major pest of fruits and nuts. Larvae were collected from three orchards each of pome fruits, stone fruits and nut trees in a major fruit growing area of Switzerland (Valais) and from six further (mainly apple) orchards throughout this country. Nine microsatellite loci were used to investigate genetic differentiation and the amount of gene flow among the sampled populations. All the loci were shown to be polymorphic in all populations. The number of alleles ranged from five to 15 over nine loci for the 15 populations. Significant genetic differentiation was noted among the populations from apple, apricot and walnut in the Valais region. Furthermore, among the eight populations sampled from apple in different geographic regions throughout Switzerland, AMOVA and pairwise FST analysis revealed significant population genetic differentiation even between populations collected from orchards 10 km apart. These results indicate that a distinct prevailing characteristic, in the present case the sedentary behaviour of the moth, can shape population architecture.
(Accepted January 13 2009)
(Online publication April 14 2009)