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Phylogeography and species distribution modelling of Cryptocephalusbarii (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae): is this alpine endemic species close to extinction?


ABSTRACT: The alternation of glacial and interglacial cycles of the Quaternary period contributed in shaping the current species distribution. Cold-adapted organisms experienced range expansion and contraction in response to the temperature decrease and increase, respectively. In this study, a fragment of the mitochondrial marker COI was used to investigate the phylogeography of Cryptocephalusbarii, a cold-adapted alpine leaf beetle species endemic of Orobie Alps, northern Italy. The relationships among populations, their divergence time, and the most probable migration model were estimated and are discussed in light of the Pleistocene climate oscillations. Through a species distribution modelling analysis, the current habitat suitability was assessed and the distribution in a future global warming scenario predicted. The main divergence events that led to the actual population structure took place from ~750,000 to ~150,000 years ago, almost following the pattern of the climate oscillations that led to the increase of the connections between the populations during cold periods and the isolation on massifs in warm periods. The most supported migration model suggests that the species survived to past adverse climatic conditions within refugia inside and at the limit of the actual range. The species distribution modelling analysis showed that C.barii is extremely sensitive to air temperature variations, thus the increase of temperature caused by global warming will reduce the suitable areas within the species range, leading to its possible extinction in the next 50 years. Cryptocephalusbarii is a representative case of how cold adapted and limited distributed species have been and could be affected by climate change, that highlights the implementation of conservation actions.

SUBMITTER: Brunetti M 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6603993 | BioStudies | 2019-01-01

SECONDARY ACCESSION(S): 10.18637/jss.v022.i04

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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