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Data from: Climate change shifts natural selection and the adaptive potential of the perennial forb Boechera stricta in the Rocky Mountains

Citation

Bemmels, Jordan B.; Anderson, Jill Theresa (2019), Data from: Climate change shifts natural selection and the adaptive potential of the perennial forb Boechera stricta in the Rocky Mountains, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0p67v8g

Abstract

Heritable genetic variation is necessary for populations to evolve in response to anthropogenic climate change. However, antagonistic genetic correlations among traits may constrain the rate of adaptation, even if substantial genetic variation exists. We examine potential genetic responses to selection by comparing multivariate genetic variance-covariances of traits and fitness (multivariate Robertson-Price identities) across different environments in a reciprocal transplant experiment of the forb Boechera stricta in the Rocky Mountains. By transplanting populations into four common gardens arrayed along an elevational gradient, and exposing populations to control and snow removal treatments, we simulated future and current climates and snowmelt regimes. Genetic variation in flowering and germination phenology declined in plants moved downslope to warmer, drier sites, suggesting that these traits may have a limited ability to evolve under future climates. Simulated climate change via snow removal altered the strength of selection on flowering traits, but we found little evidence that genetic correlations among traits are likely to affect the rate of adaptation to climate change. Overall, our results suggest that climate change may alter the evolutionary potential of B. stricta, but reduced expression of genetic variation may be a larger impediment to adaptation than constraints imposed by antagonistic genetic correlations.

Usage Notes

Funding

National Science Foundation, Award: DEB-1553408

Location

Rocky Mountains
Colorado