The role of gene flow asymmetry along an environmental gradient in constraining local adaptation and range expansion
Abbreviated Journal Title
J. Evol. Biol.
diapause; gene flow asymmetry; maladaptive; range limits; ALLONEMOBIUS-FASCIATUS; SPECIES BORDERS; DENSITY REGULATION; BODY-SIZE; EVOLUTION; ECOLOGY; CRICKET; PATTERNS; HYBRIDIZATION; DROSOPHILA; Ecology; Evolutionary Biology; Genetics & Heredity
Theoretically, asymmetric gene flow along an environmental gradient can limit species range expansion by keeping peripheral populations from locally adapting. However, few empirical studies have examined this potentially fundamental evolutionary mechanism. We address this possibility in the cricket Allonemobius socius, which exist along a season-length gradient where the probability of producing a single generation per year (univoltinism) increases with latitude. As the probability of univoltinism increases northwards, populations are expected to hedge their bets by producing a greater proportion of diapause eggs when exposed to a mild diapause cue. However, gene flow from southern populations may disrupt local adaptation in the north by reducing the proportion of diapause eggs (expected to be 100% in pure univoltine environments). This may limit range expansion along the northern periphery where A.socius compete with A.fasciatus, a sister species that exhibits an invariant diapause-only egg-laying strategy. To assess the potential for range limitation, we examined diapause incidence (the proportion of diapause eggs produced under diapause conditions), gene flow symmetry and population structure across nine A.socius populations. We found that gene flow was asymmetric and biased northwards towards the periphery. Furthermore, peripheral populations that inhabited pure univoltine environments produced numerous nondiapause eggs (a southern, bivoltine diapause phenotype), which we assume to be a suboptimal phenotype. These patterns suggest that asymmetric gene flow along the gradient constrains adaptation in peripheral populations, potentially constraining species range expansion.
Journal of Evolutionary Biology
"The role of gene flow asymmetry along an environmental gradient in constraining local adaptation and range expansion" (2013). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 2614.