Sloss, B.L., G.W. Schuurman, R.A. Paloski, O.D. Boyle, J.M. Kapfer. 2012. Novel microsatellite loci for studies of Thamnophis gartersnake genetic identity and hybridization. Conservation Genetics Resources 4:383-386.
Butler’s Gartersnakes (BGS; Thamnophis butleri) are confined to open and semi-open canopy wetlands and adjacent uplands, habitats under threat of development in Wisconsin. To address issues of species identity and putative hybridization with congeneric snakes, a suite of 18 microsatellite loci capable of cross-species amplification of Plains Gartersnakes (T. radix) and Common Gartersnakes (T. sirtalis). All loci were polymorphic in BGS with mean number of alleles per locus of 16.11 (range = 3-41) and mean observed heterozygosity of 0.659 (range = 0.311-0.978). Loci amplified efficiently in the congeneric species with high levels of intra- and inter-specific variation. These loci will aid ongoing efforts to effectively identify and manage BGS in Wisconsin.