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Data from: Eco-evolutionary feedbacks predict the time course of rapid life history evolution


Reznick, David Norman et al. (2019), Data from: Eco-evolutionary feedbacks predict the time course of rapid life history evolution, Dryad, Dataset,


Organisms can change their environment and, in so doing, change the selection they experience and how they evolve. Population density is one potential mediator of such interactions because high population densities can impact the ecosystem and reduce resource availability. At present, such interactions are best known from theory and laboratory experiments. Here we quantify the importance of such interactions in nature by transplanting guppies from a stream where they co-occur with predators into tributaries that previously lacked both guppies and predators. If guppies evolve solely because of the immediate reduction in mortality rate, the strength of selection and rate of evolution should be greatest at the outset then decline as the population adapts to its new environment. If indirect effects caused by the increase in guppy population density in the absence of predation prevail, then there should be a lag in guppy evolution because time is required for them to modify their environment. The duration of this lag is predicted to be associated with the environmental modification caused by guppies. We observed a lag in life history evolution associated with increases in population density and altered ecology. How guppies evolved matched predictions derived from evolutionary theory that incorporates such density effects.

Usage Notes


National Science Foundation, Award: DEB-0623632


W. I.