Eutrophication causes speciation reversal in whitefish adaptive radiations

Vonlanthen, Pascal; Bittner, David; Hudson, Alan G; Young, Kyle A; Müller, Ruedi; Lundsgaard-Hansen, Bänz; Roy, Denis; di Piazza, Sacha; Largiadèr, Carlo Rodolfo; Seehausen, Ole (2012). Eutrophication causes speciation reversal in whitefish adaptive radiations. Nature, 482(7385), pp. 357-362. London: Macmillan Journals Ltd. 10.1038/nature10824

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Species diversity can be lost through two different but potentially interacting extinction processes: demographic decline and speciation reversal through introgressive hybridization. To investigate the relative contribution of these processes, we analysed historical and contemporary data of replicate whitefish radiations from 17 pre-alpine European lakes and reconstructed changes in genetic species differentiation through time using historical samples. Here we provide evidence that species diversity evolved in response to ecological opportunity, and that eutrophication, by diminishing this opportunity, has driven extinctions through speciation reversal and demographic decline. Across the radiations, the magnitude of eutrophication explains the pattern of species loss and levels of genetic and functional distinctiveness among remaining species. We argue that extinction by speciation reversal may be more widespread than currently appreciated. Preventing such extinctions will require that conservation efforts not only target existing species but identify and protect the ecological and evolutionary processes that generate and maintain species.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Haematology, Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Laboratory Medicine and Hospital Pharmacy (DOLS) > Institute of Clinical Chemistry
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Ecology and Evolution (IEE)
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Ecology and Evolution (IEE) > Aquatic Ecology

UniBE Contributor:

Bittner, David; di Piazza, Sacha; Largiadèr, Carlo Rodolfo and Seehausen, Ole

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

0028-0836

Publisher:

Macmillan Journals Ltd.

Language:

English

Submitter:

Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:22

Last Modified:

03 Jul 2014 10:53

Publisher DOI:

10.1038/nature10824

PubMed ID:

22337055

Web of Science ID:

000300287100037

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/7576 (FactScience: 212870)

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