UBC Research Data

Data from: The effect of range overlap on ecological niche divergence depends on spatial scale in monkeyflowers Li, Qin; Grossenbacher, Dena L.; Angert, Amy L.


Patterns of niche divergence and geographical range overlap of closely related species provide insights into the evolutionary dynamics of ecological niches. When ranges overlap, shared selective pressures may preserve niche similarity along coarse‐scale macrohabitat axes (e.g., bioclimates). Alternatively, competitive interactions may drive greater divergence along local‐scale microhabitat axes (e.g., micro‐topographical features). We tested these hypotheses in 16 species pairs of western North American monkeyflowers (Erythranthe and Diplacus, formerly Mimulus) with species’ niches, geographic ranges and a robust phylogeny. We found that macrohabitat niche divergence decreased with increasing range overlap, consistent with convergent selection operating at a coarse scale. No significant relationship was detected for microhabitat niches. Additionally, niche divergence was greater for young pairs along all macrohabitat niche axes, but greater for old pairs along one microhabitat axis related to vegetation cover. For a subset of species pairs with partially overlapping ranges, greater microhabitat divergence was detected in sympatry than in allopatry for at least one niche axis for three pairs, consistent with character displacement in sympatry. Thus, coarse‐ and local‐scale niche divergence show dissimilar patterns in relation to range overlap and evolutionary time, perhaps because the relative importance of convergent versus divergent selection depends on spatial scale.; Usage notes
Phylogeny, macrohabitat and microhabitat data of MimulusThree files: 1) the pruned phylogeny of Mimulus (in nexus format); 2) macrohabitat niche data for occurrences of 32 species with corresponding latitude/longitude and projected coordinates, including five bioclimatic variables, eight edaphic variables, and four topographic variables; 3) microhabitat niche data from plot-level measurements for each population of 32 species, including five variables and corresponding site types.Mimulus_Niche_Phylogeny.zip

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