Mitochondrial DNA Part B 2 (1) 257-258 [2017-04-28; online 2017-04-28]
The beluga whale is one of three endemic Arctic whales. The species is philopatric, and its migration patterns are passed from mother to calf. Management of the species is informed by the levels of genetic structuring among summer aggregation sites based on mitochondrial D-Loop data. To assess the levels of differentiation across the entire mitochondrial genome within belugas, we present a comparison between the first two complete mitochondrial genomes from opposite sides of their distribution range: Baffin Bay and the Russian Far East. Our analyses reveal that additional phylogenetic insights can be gained from expanding the genetic region analyzed. Further, we estimate the divergence time between the two mitochondrial genomes to be 0.469 MYA.