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Widespread parallel population adaptation to climate variation across a radiation: implications for adaptation to climate change

Thorpe, R.S. and Barlow, A. and Malhotra, A. and Surget-Groba, Y. (2015) Widespread parallel population adaptation to climate variation across a radiation: implications for adaptation to climate change. Molecular Ecology, 24 (5). pp. 1019-1030. DOI: 10.1111/mec.13093

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Abstract

Global warming will impact species in a number of ways, and it is important to know the extent to which natural populations can adapt to anthropogenic climate change by natural selection. Parallel microevolution within separate species can demonstrate natural selection, but several studies of homoplasy have not yet revealed examples of widespread parallel evolution in a generic radiation. Taking into account primary phylogeographic divisions, we investigate numerous quantitative traits (size, shape, scalation, colour pattern and hue) in anole radiations from the mountainous Lesser Antillean islands. Adaptation to climatic differences can lead to very pronounced differences between spatially close populations with all studied traits showing some evidence of parallel evolution. Traits from shape, scalation, pattern and hue (particularly the latter) show widespread evolutionary parallels within these species in response to altitudinal climate variation greater than extreme anthropogenic climate change predicted for 2080. This gives strong evidence of the ability to adapt to climate variation by natural selection throughout this radiation. As anoles can evolve very rapidly, it suggests anthropogenic climate change is likely to be less of a conservation threat than other factors, such as habitat loss and invasive species, in this, Lesser Antillean, biodiversity hot spot.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Research Publications
Departments: College of Natural Sciences > School of Biological Sciences
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2015 02:38
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2015 02:49
ISSN: 0962-1083
URI: http://e.bangor.ac.uk/id/eprint/3847
Identification Number: DOI: 10.1111/mec.13093
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
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