Project description:BACKGROUND: The Galliformes is a well-known and widely distributed Order in Aves. The phylogenetic relationships of galliform birds, especially the turkeys, grouse, chickens, quails, and pheasants, have been studied intensively, likely because of their close association with humans. Despite extensive studies, convergent morphological evolution and rapid radiation have resulted in conflicting hypotheses of phylogenetic relationships. Many internal nodes have remained ambiguous. RESULTS: We analyzed the complete mitochondrial (mt) genomes from 34 galliform species, including 14 new mt genomes and 20 published mt genomes, and obtained a single, robust tree. Most of the internal branches were relatively short and the terminal branches long suggesting an ancient, rapid radiation. The Megapodiidae formed the sister group to all other galliforms, followed in sequence by the Cracidae, Odontophoridae and Numididae. The remaining clade included the Phasianidae, Tetraonidae and Meleagrididae. The genus Arborophila was the sister group of the remaining taxa followed by Polyplectron. This was followed by two major clades: ((((Gallus, Bambusicola) Francolinus) (Coturnix, Alectoris)) Pavo) and (((((((Chrysolophus, Phasianus) Lophura) Syrmaticus) Perdix) Pucrasia) (Meleagris, Bonasa)) ((Lophophorus, Tetraophasis) Tragopan))). CONCLUSIONS: The traditional hypothesis of monophyletic lineages of pheasants, partridges, peafowls and tragopans was not supported in this study. Mitogenomic analyses recovered robust phylogenetic relationships and suggested that the Galliformes formed a model group for the study of morphological and behavioral evolution.
Project description:Dispersal ability is a key factor in determining insular distributions and island community composition, yet non-vagile terrestrial organisms widely occur on oceanic islands. The landfowl (pheasants, partridges, grouse, turkeys, quails and relatives) are generally poor dispersers, but the Old World quail (Coturnix) are a notable exception. These birds evolved small body sizes and high-aspect-ratio wing shapes, and hence are capable of trans-continental migrations and trans-oceanic colonization. Two monotypic partridge genera, Margaroperdix of Madagascar and Anurophasis of alpine New Guinea, may represent additional examples of trans-marine dispersal in landfowl, but their body size and wing shape are typical of poorly dispersive continental species. Here, we estimate historical relationships of quail and their relatives using phylogenomics, and infer body size and wing shape evolution in relation to trans-marine dispersal events. Our results show that Margaroperdix and Anurophasis are nested within the Coturnix quail, and are each 'island giants' that independently evolved from dispersive, Coturnix-like ancestral populations that colonized and were subsequently isolated on Madagascar and New Guinea. This evolutionary cycle of gain and loss of dispersal ability, coupled with extinction of dispersive taxa, can result in the false appearance that non-vagile taxa somehow underwent rare oceanic dispersal.
Project description:The Late Cretaceous (?95-66 million years ago) western North American landmass of Laramidia displayed heightened non-marine vertebrate diversity and intracontinental regionalism relative to other latest Cretaceous Laurasian ecosystems. Processes generating these patterns during this interval remain poorly understood despite their presumed role in the diversification of many clades. Tyrannosauridae, a clade of large-bodied theropod dinosaurs restricted to the Late Cretaceous of Laramidia and Asia, represents an ideal group for investigating Laramidian patterns of evolution. We use new tyrannosaurid discoveries from Utah--including a new taxon which represents the geologically oldest member of the clade--to investigate the evolution and biogeography of Tyrannosauridae. These data suggest a Laramidian origin for Tyrannosauridae, and implicate sea-level related controls in the isolation, diversification, and dispersal of this and many other Late Cretaceous vertebrate clades.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In island archipelagos, where islands have experienced repeated periods of fragmentation and connection through cyclic changes in sea level, complex among-island distributions might reflect historical distributional changes or local evolution. We test the relative importance of these mechanisms in an endemic radiation of Rhagada land snails in the Dampier Archipelago, a continental archipelago off the coast of Western Australia, where ten morphospecies have complex, overlapping distributions. RESULTS:We obtained partial mtDNA sequence (COI) for 1015 snails collected from 213 locations across 30 Islands, and used Bayesian phylogenetic analysis and Analysis of Molecular Variance (AMOVA) to determine whether geography or the morphological taxonomy best explains the pattern of molecular evolution. Rather than forming distinct monophyletic groups, as would be expected if they had single, independent origins, all of the widely distributed morphospecies were polyphyletic, distributed among several well-supported clades, each of which included several morphospecies. Each mitochondrial clade had a clear, cohesive geographic distribution, together forming a series of parapatric replacements separated by narrow contact zones. AMOVA revealed further incongruence between mtDNA diversity and morphological variation within clades, as the taxonomic hypothesis always explained a low or non-significant proportion of the molecular variation. In contrast, the pattern of mtDNA evolution closely reflected contemporary and historical marine barriers. CONCLUSIONS:Despite opportunities for distributional changes during periods when the islands were connected, there is no evidence that dispersal has contributed to the geographic variation of shell form at the broad scale. Based on an estimate of dispersal made previously for Rhagada, we conclude that the periods of connection have been too short in duration to allow for extensive overland dispersal or deep mitochondrial introgression. The result is a sharp and resilient phylogeographic pattern. The distribution of morphotypes among clades and distant islands is explained most simply by their parallel evolution.
Project description:We provide preliminary insights into the global phylogeographic and evolutionary patterns across species of the hydrozoan superfamily Plumularioidea (Cnidaria: Hydrozoa). We analyzed 1,114 16S sequences of 198 putative species of Plumularioidea collected worldwide. We investigated genetic connections and divergence in relation to present-day and ancient biogeographic barriers, climate changes and oceanic circulation. Geographical distributions of most species are generally more constrained than previously assumed. Some species able to raft are dispersed widely. Human-mediated dispersal explains some wide geographical ranges. Trans-Atlantic genetic connections are presently unlikely for most of the tropical-temperate species, but were probably more frequent until the Miocene-Pliocene transition, before restriction of the Tethys Sea and the Central American Seaway. Trans-Atlantic colonizations were predominantly directed westwards through (sub)tropical waters. The Azores were colonized multiple times and through different routes, mainly from the east Atlantic, at least since the Pliocene. Extant geminate clades separated by the Isthmus of Panama have predominantly Atlantic origin. Various ancient colonizations mainly directed from the Indian Ocean to the Atlantic occurred through the Tethys Sea and around South Africa in periods of lower intensity of the Benguela upwelling. Thermal tolerance, population sizes, dispersal strategies, oceanic currents, substrate preference, and land barriers are important factors for dispersal and speciation of marine hydroids.
Project description:Living members of Archosauria, the reptile clade containing Crocodylia and Aves, have a wide range of skeletal morphologies, ecologies and body size. The range of body size greatly increases when extinct archosaurs are included, because extinct Archosauria includes the largest members of any terrestrial vertebrate group (e.g. 70-tonne titanosaurs, 20-tonne theropods). Archosaurs evolved various skeletal adaptations for large body size, but these adaptations varied among clades and did not always appear consistently with body size or ecology. Modification of intervertebral articulations, specifically the presence of a hyposphene-hypantrum articulation between trunk vertebrae, occurs in a variety of extinct archosaurs (e.g. non-avian dinosaurs, pseudosuchians). We surveyed the phylogenetic distribution of the hyposphene-hypantrum to test its relationship with body size. We found convergent evolution among large-bodied clades, except when the clade evolved an alternative mechanism for vertebral bracing. For example, some extinct lineages that lack the hyposphene-hypantrum articulation (e.g. ornithischians) have ossified tendons that braced their vertebral column. Ossified tendons are present even in small taxa and in small-bodied juveniles, but large-bodied taxa with ossified tendons reached those body sizes without evolving the hyposphene-hypantrum articulation. The hyposphene-hypantrum was permanently lost in extinct crownward members of both major archosaur lineages (i.e. Crocodylia and Aves) as they underwent phyletic size decrease, changes in vertebral morphology and shifts in ecology.
2019-01-01 | S-EPMC6837189 | BioStudies
Project description:Aves: Galliformes raw sequence reads
Project description:Dispersal syndromes (i.e. suites of phenotypic correlates of dispersal) are potentially important determinants of local adaptation in populations. Species that exhibit sexual dimorphism in their life history or behaviour may exhibit sex-specific differences in their dispersal syndromes. Unfortunately, there is little empirical evidence of sex differences in dispersal syndromes and how they respond to environmental change or dispersal evolution. We investigated these issues using two same-generation studies and a long-term (greater than 70 generations) selection experiment on laboratory populations of Drosophila melanogaster There was a marked difference between the dispersal syndromes of males and females, the extent of which was modulated by nutrition availability. Moreover, dispersal evolution via spatial sorting reversed the direction of dispersal×sex interaction in one trait (desiccation resistance), while eliminating the sex difference in another trait (body size). Thus, we show that sex differences obtained through same-generation trait-associations ('ecological dispersal syndromes') are probably environment-dependent. Moreover, even under constant environments, they are not good predictors of the sex differences in 'evolutionary dispersal syndrome' (i.e. trait-associations shaped during dispersal evolution). Our findings have implications for local adaptation in the context of sex-biased dispersal and habitat-matching, as well as for the use of dispersal syndromes as a proxy of dispersal.This article is part of the theme issue 'Linking local adaptation with the evolution of sex differences'.
Project description:Under allopatric speciation models, a key step in the build-up of species richness is population dispersal leading to the co-occurrence of previously geographically isolated forms. Despite its central importance for community assembly, the extent to which the transition from spatial segregation (allopatry or parapatry) to coexistence (sympatry) is a predictable process, or alternatively one governed by chance and the vagaries of biogeographic history, remains poorly understood. Here, we use estimated divergence times and current patterns of geographical range overlap among sister species to explore the evolution of sympatry in vertebrates. We show that rates of transition to sympatry vary predictably according to ecology, being faster in marine or strongly dispersive terrestrial clades. This association with organism vagility is robust to the relative frequency of geographical speciation modes and consistent across taxonomic scales and metrics of dispersal ability. These findings reject neutral models of dispersal assembly based simply on evolutionary age and are not predicted by the main alternative view that range overlap is primarily constrained by biotic interactions. We conclude that species differences in dispersal limitation are fundamental in organizing the assembly of ecological communities and shaping broad-scale patterns of biodiversity over space and time.
Project description:Plesiosaurs are a prominent group of Mesozoic marine reptiles, belonging to the more inclusive clades Pistosauroidea and Sauropterygia. In the Middle Triassic, the early pistosauroid ancestors of plesiosaurs left their ancestral coastal habitats and increasingly adapted to a life in the open ocean. This ecological shift was accompanied by profound changes in locomotion, sensory ecology and metabolism. However, investigations of physiological adaptations on the cellular level related to the pelagic lifestyle are lacking so far. Using vascular canal diameter, derived from osteohistological thin-sections, we show that inferred red blood cell size significantly increases in pistosauroids compared to more basal sauropterygians. This change appears to have occurred in conjunction with the dispersal to open marine environments, with cell size remaining consistently large in plesiosaurs. Enlarged red blood cells likely represent an adaptation of plesiosaurs repeated deep dives in the pelagic habitat and mirror conditions found in extant marine mammals and birds. Our results emphasize physiological aspects of adaptive convergence among fossil and extant marine amniotes and add to our current understanding of plesiosaur evolution.