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Abstract Detail


Melton, Anthony [1], Soltis, Pamela S. [2], Soltis, Douglas [3].

Niche Evolution in Rapid Radiations: Do Hybridization and Polyploidization Drive Niche Divergence?

How organisms diversify across heterogeneous environments remains an important question in evolutionary biology. Niche divergence can play a vital role in this process, as lineages diverge and partition themselves in the niche space of their environments. The flowering plant genus Liatris (Asteraceae) is an ideal clade to use as a model for investigating niche evolution following recent, rapid radiation. The genus represents a rapid radiation that comprises 37 species, including numerous putative hybrids and several known polyploids, that occur in a diverse array of habitats. However, despite the wealth of research opportunities, the clade has not been thoroughly investigated. We used ecological data and digitized herbaria records to develop ecological niche models (ENMs) for Liatris species and putative hybrids. We conducted flow cytometry to identify diploid and polyploid lineages within Liatris. Phyloclim and ENMtools were used to assess niche overlap and niche divergence between polyploids, hybrids, and their progenitor species. Preliminary results suggest that aspects of the niches of putative sister lineages have differentiated since their most recent common ancestor. This research will increase our understanding of how these integrated aspects of biology can affect speciation and niche evolution patterns within a rapid radiation, inform views on niche conservatism, and help elucidate how the diversity we see today may have arisen.

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1 - University of Florida, Dept. of Biology, 220 Bartram Hall, P.O. Box 118525, Gainesville, FL, 32611
2 - University Of Florida, Florida Museum Of Natural History, Gainesville, FL, 32611.0, United States
3 - University of Florida, Biology, Gainesville, FL

Niche Evolution
ecological niche modeling

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Ecology
Location: Grand Ballroom - Exhibit Hall/Mayo Civic Center
Date: Monday, July 23rd, 2018
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 5:30 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PEC015
Abstract ID:393
Candidate for Awards:Ecological Section Best Graduate Student Poster

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