Data from: Ecological sorting and character displacement contribute to the structure of communities of Clarkia species
Eisen, Katherine E.; Geber, Monica Ann; Geber, Monica A. (2018), Data from: Ecological sorting and character displacement contribute to the structure of communities of Clarkia species, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.r774t76
Despite long‐standing interest in the evolutionary ecology of plants that share pollinators, few studies have explored how these interactions may affect communities during both community assembly (ecological sorting) and through ongoing, in situ evolution (character displacement), and how the effects of these interactions may change with community context. To determine if communities display patterns consistent with ecological sorting, we assessed the frequency of co‐occurrence of four species of Clarkia in the southern Sierra foothills (Kern County, CA, USA). To investigate potential character displacement, we measured pollination‐related traits on plants grown in a greenhouse common garden from seed collected in communities with one, two, or four Clarkia species. Among the four species of Clarkia in this region, the two species that are often found in multi‐species communities also co‐occur with one another more frequently than expected under a null model. This pattern is consistent with ecological sorting, although further investigation is needed to determine the role of pollinators in shaping community assembly. Patterns of trait variation in a common garden suggest that these two species have diverged in floral traits and converged in flowering time where they co‐occur, which is consistent with character displacement. Trait variation across community types also suggests that the process and outcome of character displacement may vary with community context. Because community context appears to affect both the direction and magnitude of character displacement, change in more species‐rich communities may not be predictable from patterns of change in simpler communities.
National Science Foundation,
Award: DGE-1650441; DEB-1256288