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Cryptic speciation associated with geographic and ecological divergence in two Amazonian Heliconius butterflies

Rosser, N; Freitas, AVL; Huertas, B; Joron, M; Lamas, G; Merot, C; Simpson, F; ... Dasmahapatra, KK; + view all (2019) Cryptic speciation associated with geographic and ecological divergence in two Amazonian Heliconius butterflies. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society , 186 (1) pp. 233-249. 10.1093/zoolinnean/zly046. Green open access

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Abstract

The evolution of reproductive isolation via a switch in mimetic wing coloration has become the paradigm for speciation in aposematic Heliconius butterflies. Here, we provide a counterexample to this, by documenting two cryptic species within the taxon formerly considered Heliconius demeter Staudinger, 1897. Amplified fragment length polymorphisms identify two sympatric genotypic clusters in northern Peru, corresponding to subspecies Heliconius demeter ucayalensis H. Holzinger & R. Holzinger, 1975 and Heliconius demeter joroni ssp. nov. These subspecies are reciprocally monophyletic for the mitochondrial genes COI and COII and the nuclear gene Ef1α, and exhibit marked differences in larval morphology and host plant use. COI sequences from 13 of the 15 currently recognized subspecies show that mtDNA differences are reflected across the range of H. demeter, with a deep phylogenetic split between the southern and northern Amazonian races. As such, our data suggest vicariant speciation driven by disruptive selection for larval performance on different host plants. We raise Heliconius demeter eratosignis (Joicey & Talbot, 1925) to Heliconius eratosignis based on nomenclatural priority, a species also comprising H. eratosignis ucayalensis comb. nov. and three other southern Amazonian races. Heliconius demeter joroni spp. nov. remains within H. demeter s.s., along with northern Amazonian and Guianan subspecies.

Type: Article
Title: Cryptic speciation associated with geographic and ecological divergence in two Amazonian Heliconius butterflies
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/zoolinnean/zly046
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/zoolinnean/zly046
Language: English
Additional information: © 2018 The Linnean Society of London, Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: butterflies, cryptic species, genotypic clusters, host plant shift, integrative taxonomy, mimicry, vicariant speciation
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10090359
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