Speciation in chestnut-shouldered fairy-wrens (Malurus spp.) and rapid phenotypic divergence in variegated fairy-wrens (Malurus lamberti): A multilocus approach
Griffith University, Australian Rivers Institute, Griffith School of Environment, 170 Kessels Road, Nathan, QLD 4111, Australia.Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution (Impact Factor: 3.92). 03/2012; 63(3):668-78. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2012.02.016
The chestnut-shouldered fairy-wrens comprise a subgroup of four species in the genus Malurus (Passeriformes: Maluridae). Collectively, they are widespread across the Australian continent but phenotypic variation is strongly structured geographically in just one species, M. lamberti. Earlier phylogenetic analyses of this group have been limited to one or two individuals for each species and have not represented all currently recognised subspecies of M. lamberti. Historically, the taxonomy and nomenclature of the M. lamberti complex has been debated, in part because of morphological similarities among its subspecies and another member of the group, M. amabilis. We reconstructed the phylogeny of all four species of chestnut-shouldered fairy-wrens including all four subspecies of M. lamberti using a mitochondrial gene (ND2), five anonymous nuclear loci and three nuclear introns. Phylogenetic analysis of the mitochondrial ND2 gene nests M. amabilis within M. lamberti rendering the latter paraphyletic. Individual nuclear gene trees failed to reliably resolve each of the species boundaries or the phylogenetic relationships found in the mtDNA tree. When combined, however, a strongly supported overall topology was resolved supporting the monophyly of M. lamberti and its sister species relationship to M. amabilis. Current subspecific taxonomy of M. lamberti was not concordant with all evolutionary lineages of M. lamberti, nominotypical M. l. lamberti being the only subspecies recovered as a monophyletic group from mtDNA. Some genetic structuring is evident and potential barriers to gene flow are discussed.
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ABSTRACT: The Australo-Papuan fairy-wrens, emu-wrens and grasswrens comprise the passerine family Maluridae. They have long been known for their spectacular plumages, remarkable behavioural ecology and intriguing biogeography. The family has provided an ideal model with which to explore how phylogenetic and phylogeographic analyses of DNA-sequence data can inform understanding of evolutionary history and present-day biology. We review what has been learned of the phylogeny of the group and the phylogeographic history of individual species. We conclude that there is now a strong framework within which to pursue the remaining species-level taxonomic issues, and to extend ecological and behavioural studies into a new era of more detailed genetic questions such as the role of gene-environment interactions in adaptation. We highlight some remaining examples of such questions and discuss how they might be addressed.The Emu: official organ of the Australasian Ornithologists' Union 01/2013; 113(3):195. DOI:10.1071/MU12081 · 1.11 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Not all butterflies are innocuous plant-feeders. A small number of taxa in the family Lycaenidae have graduated from mutualistic partnerships with ants to predatory or parasitic associations. These highly-specialized life histories, involving butterfly larvae living inside ant colonies, are often associated with rarity and vulnerability to extinction. In the present study, we examined the evolutionary relationships of a poorly-known group of seven taxa herein referred to as the idmo-group within the Australian lycaenid genus Ogyris. The idmo-group has a relictual distribution across southern Australia and includes taxa with highly-specialized phytophagous and myrmecophagous life histories. A phylogeny based on mitochondrial DNA (cytochrome oxidase I and cytochrome b] and the nuclear DNA locus elongation factor 1α (EF1α), generally agrees with current taxonomy and supports the recent elevation of endangered taxon Ogyris halmaturia to full species status. The transition to myrmecophagy was dated to the mid-Miocene (approximately 16 Mya), when southern Australia experienced a humid climate and extensive mesic biome. The arid Nullarbor Plain, a major biogeographical feature of central southern Australia, divides the remnants of this mesic biome into south-eastern and south-western isolates. Late-Miocene to Pliocene divergence estimates for polytypic Ogyris species across the Nullarbor were older than estimates made for similarly distributed birds, butterflies, mammals, and reptiles, which mostly date to the Pleistocene. The concept of highly-specialized life histories as evolutionary dead-end strategies is well exemplified by the idmo-group. Data compiled on the known extant subpopulations for idmo-group taxa show that all of these extraordinary butterflies are scarce and several face imminent threat of extinction. © 2013 The Linnean Society of London, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 2013, ●●, ●●–●●.Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 12/2013; 111(2). DOI:10.1111/bij.12210 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Methods that integrate population-level sampling from multiple taxa into a single community-level analysis are an essential addition to the comparative phylogeographic toolkit. Detecting how species within communities have demographically tracked each other in space and time is important for understanding the effects of future climate and landscape changes and the resulting acceleration of extinctions, biological invasions and potential surges in adaptive evolution. Here we present a statistical framework for such an analysis based on hierarchical approximate Bayesian computation (hABC) with the goal of detecting concerted demographic histories across an ecological assemblage. Our method combines population genetic datasets from multiple taxa into a single analysis to estimate: 1) the proportion of a community sample that demographically expanded in a temporally clustered pulse; and 2) when the pulse occurred. To validate the accuracy and utility of this new approach, we use simulation cross-validation experiments and subsequently analyze an empirical dataset of 32 avian populations from Australia that are hypothesized to have expanded from smaller refugia populations in the late Pleistocene. The method can accommodate dataset heterogeneity such as variability in effective population size, mutation rates, and sample sizes across species and exploits the statistical strength from the simultaneous analysis of multiple species. This hABC framework used in a multi-taxa demographic context can increase our understanding of the impact of historical climate change by determining what proportion of the community responded in concert or independently, and can be used with a wide variety of comparative phylogeographic datasets as biota-wide DNA barcoding data sets accumulate.Molecular Biology and Evolution 06/2014; 31(9). DOI:10.1093/molbev/msu187 · 9.11 Impact Factor
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