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Data from: Divergence in style length and pollen size leads to a postmating-prezygotic reproductive barrier among populations of Silene latifolia

Citation

Brothers, Amanda N.; Delph, Lynda F. (2017), Data from: Divergence in style length and pollen size leads to a postmating-prezygotic reproductive barrier among populations of Silene latifolia, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0f8j8

Abstract

A central tenet of speciation research is the need to identify reproductive isolating barriers. One approach to this line of research is to identify the phenotypes that lead to reproductive isolation. Several studies on flowering plants have shown that differences in style length contribute to reproductive isolation between species, leading us to consider whether style length could act as a reproductive barrier among populations of a single species. This could occur if style length varied sufficiently and pollen size covaried with style length. Populations of Silene latifolia exhibit variation in flower size, including style length, that is negatively correlated with annual precipitation. We show that this divergence in style length has a genetic basis and acts as a reproductive barrier: males from small-flowered populations produced relatively small pollen grains that were poor at fertilizing ovules when crossed to females from large-flowered populations, leading to a significant reduction in seed production. Manipulating the distance pollen tubes had to travel revealed that this failure was purely mechanical and not the result of other incompatibilities. These results show that style length acts as a postmating-prezygotic reproductive barrier and indicate a potential link between ecotypic differentiation and reproductive isolation within a species.

Usage Notes

Funding

National Science Foundation, Award: DEB-1405737