Data from: Functional decoupling between flowers and leaves in the Ameroglossum pernambucense complex can facilitate local adaptation across a pollinator and climatic heterogeneous landscape
Wanderley, Artur M.; Galetto, Leonardo; Machado, Isabel C. S. (2015), Data from: Functional decoupling between flowers and leaves in the Ameroglossum pernambucense complex can facilitate local adaptation across a pollinator and climatic heterogeneous landscape, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.09dg6
Decoupling between floral and leaf traits is expected in plants with specialized pollination systems to assure a precise flower–pollinator fit, irrespective of leaf variation associated with environmental heterogeneity (functional modularity). Nonetheless, developmental interactions among floral traits also decouple flowers from leaves regardless of selection pressures (developmental modularity). We tested functional modularity in the hummingbird-pollinated flowers of the Ameroglossum pernambucense complex while controlling for developmental modularity. Using two functional traits responsible for flower–pollinator fit [floral tube length (TL) and anther–nectary distance (AN)], one floral trait not linked to pollination [sepal length (SL), control for developmental modularity] and one leaf trait [leaf length (LL)], we found evidence of flower functional modularity. Covariation between TL and AN was ca. two-fold higher than the covariation of either of these traits with sepal and leaf lengths, and variations in TL and AN, important for a precise flower–pollinator fit, were smaller than SL and LL variations. Furthermore, we show that previously reported among-population variation of flowers associated with local pollinator phenotypes was independent from SL and LL variations. These results suggest that TL and AN are functionally linked to fit pollinators and sufficiently decoupled from developmentally related floral traits (SL) and vegetative traits (LL). These results support previous evidences of population differentiation due to local adaptation in the A. pernambucense complex and shed light on the role of flower–leaf decoupling for local adaptation in species distributed across biotic and abiotic heterogeneous landscapes.