Sarkinen, Tiina , Simon, Marcelo , Pennington, R.Toby , Lavin, Matt , Hughes, Colin .
Evolutionary islands in the Andes:persistence, isolation and endemism in Andean dry tropical forests.
The relative contribution of biome history and geological setting to species richness in biodiversity hotspots remains poorly understood. The tropical Andes is one the world's top biodiversity hotspots, and with its diverse biomes and the relatively recent but dramatic mountain uplift, the Andes offers a setting to study the importance of biome stability and geological history in species rich biomes. Using densely-sampled time-calibrated molecular phylogenies for a set of Andean tropical dry forest plant lineages (Mimosa, Amicia, Cyathostegia, Poissonia and Coursetia, Leguminosae), we show that the high levels of endemism in these forests have resulted from a long history of biome stasis and dispersal limitation. Deep divergences between sister species and geographically structured clades of inter-Andean valley endemics suggest that dispersal between these dry forests has been limited over the past c. 19 million years of Andean uplift. Such prolonged dry forest stasis is in line with Miocene fossils from Ecuador closely resembling extant dry forest plants. The contrasting evolutionary timescales of older dry forest and very recent paramo plant diversification suggest that the exceptional biodiversity found in the Andes is the outcome of a complex set of different patterns of historical species assembly.
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1 - University of Zurich, Institute for Systematic Botany, Zollikerstrasse 107, Zurich, 8008, Switzerland
2 - Embrapa , Recursos Genéticos e Biotechnologia, PqEB, Caixa Postal 02372, Brasilia, DF, 70770-917, Brazil
3 - Royal Botanic Gardens, 20A INVERLEITH ROW, EDINBURGH, N/A, EH3 5LR, United Kingdom
4 - Montana State University, Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology, Bozeman, Montana , 59717, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Location: Lindell A/Chase Park Plaza
Date: Monday, July 11th, 2011
Time: 11:15 AM