Data from: Mating system affects population performance and extinction risk under environmental challenge
Plesnar-Bielak, Agata; Skrzynecka, Anna M.; Prokop, Zofia M.; Radwan, Jacek (2012), Data from: Mating system affects population performance and extinction risk under environmental challenge, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.3s2q0
Failure of organisms to adapt to sudden environmental changes may lead to extinction. Mating system, by affecting fertility and the strength of sexual selection, may have a major impact on a population’s chances to adapt and survive. Here, we use experimental evolution in bulb mites (Rhizoglyphus robini) to examine the effects of mating system on population performance under environmental change. We demonstrate that populations in which monogamy was enforced suffered a dramatic fitness decline when evolving at an increased temperature, whereas the negative effects of change in thermal environment were alleviated in polygamous populations. Strikingly, within 17 generations, all monogamous populations experiencing higher temperature went extinct, whereas all polygamous populations survived. Our results show that mating systems may have dramatic effects on the risk of extinction under environmental change.