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Data from: Learning to speciate: the biased learning of mate preferences promotes adaptive radiation

Citation

Gilman, R. Tucker; Kozak, Genevieve M. (2015), Data from: Learning to speciate: the biased learning of mate preferences promotes adaptive radiation, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.3640g

Abstract

Bursts of rapid repeated speciation called adaptive radiations have generated much of Earth’s biodiversity and fascinated biologists since Darwin, but we still do not know why some lineages radiate and others do not. Understanding what causes assortative mating to evolve rapidly and repeatedly in the same lineage is key to understanding adaptive radiation. Many species that have undergone adaptive radiations exhibit mate preference learning, where individuals acquire mate preferences by observing the phenotypes of other members of their populations. Mate preference learning can be biased if individuals also learn phenotypes to avoid in mates, and shift their preferences away from these avoided phenotypes. We used individual-based computational simulations to study whether biased and unbiased mate preference learning promote ecological speciation and adaptive radiation. We found that ecological speciation can be rapid and repeated when mate preferences are biased, but is inhibited when mate preferences are learned without bias. Our results suggest that biased mate preference learning may play an important role in generating animal biodiversity through adaptive radiation.

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