Genome-wide sequence data show no evidence of hybridization and introgression among pollinator wasps associated with a community of Panamanian strangler figs
Satler, Jordan et al. (2022), Genome-wide sequence data show no evidence of hybridization and introgression among pollinator wasps associated with a community of Panamanian strangler figs, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.fbg79cnwk
The specificity of pollinator host choice influences opportunities for reproductive isolation in their host plants. Similarly, host plants can influence opportunities for reproductive isolation in their pollinators. For example, in the fig and fig wasp mutualism, offspring of fig pollinator wasps mate inside the inflorescence that the mothers pollinate. Although often host specific, multiple fig pollinator species are sometimes associated with the same fig species, potentially enabling hybridization between wasp species. Here we study the 19 pollinator species (Pegoscapus spp.) associated with an entire community of 16 Panamanian strangler fig species (Ficus subgenus Urostigma, section Americanae) to determine whether the previously documented history of pollinator host switching and current host sharing predicts genetic admixture among the pollinator species, as has been observed in their host figs. Specifically, we use genome-wide ultraconserved element (UCE) loci to estimate phylogenetic relationships and test for hybridization and introgression among the pollinator species. In all cases, we recover well-delimited pollinator species that contain high interspecific divergence. Even among pairs of pollinator species that currently reproduce within syconia of shared host fig species, we found no evidence of hybridization or introgression. This is in contrast to their host figs, where hybridization and introgression have been detected within this community, and more generally, within figs worldwide. Consistent with general patterns recovered among other obligate pollination mutualisms (e.g., yucca moths and yuccas), our results suggest that while hybridization and introgression are processes operating within the host plants, these processes are relatively unimportant within their associated insect pollinators.
National Science Foundation, Award: DEB-1556853