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Data from: Ancient vicariance and climate-driven extinction explain continental-wide disjunctions in Africa: the case of the Rand Flora genus Canarina (Campanulaceae)

Citation

Mairal, Mario et al. (2015), Data from: Ancient vicariance and climate-driven extinction explain continental-wide disjunctions in Africa: the case of the Rand Flora genus Canarina (Campanulaceae), Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.5jc73

Abstract

Transoceanic distributions have attracted the interest of scientists for centuries. Less attention has been paid to the evolutionary origins of ‘continent-wide’ disjunctions, in which related taxa are distributed across isolated regions within the same continent. A prime example is the ‘Rand Flora’ pattern, which shows sister taxa disjunctly distributed in the continental margins of Africa. Here, we explore the evolutionary origins of this pattern using the genus Canarina, with three species: C. canariensis, associated with the Canarian laurisilva, and C. eminii and C. abyssinica, endemic to the Afromontane region in East Africa, as case study. We infer phylogenetic relationships, divergence times and the history of migration events within Canarina using Bayesian inference on a large sample of chloroplast and nuclear sequences. Ecological niche modelling was employed to infer the climatic niche of Canarina through time. Dating was performed with a novel nested approach to solve the problem of using deep time calibration points within a molecular dataset comprising both above-species and population-level sampling. Results show C. abyssinica as sister to a clade formed by disjunct C. eminii and C. canariensis. Miocene divergences were inferred among species, whereas infraspecific divergences fell within the Pleistocene–Holocene periods. Although C. eminii and C. canariensis showed a strong genetic geographic structure, among-population divergences were older in the former than in the latter. Our results suggest that Canarina originated in East Africa and later migrated across North Africa, with vicariance and aridification-driven extinction explaining the 7000 km/7 million year divergence between the Canarian and East African endemics.

Usage Notes

Location

Canary Islands
Asia
Africa