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Data from: Local adaptation and divergence in colour signal conspicuousness between monomorphic and polymorphic lineages in a lizard

Citation

McLean, Claire A.; Moussalli, Adnan; Stuart-Fox, Devi (2014), Data from: Local adaptation and divergence in colour signal conspicuousness between monomorphic and polymorphic lineages in a lizard, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.kv358

Abstract

Population differences in visual environment can lead to divergence in multiple components of animal coloration including signalling traits and colour patterns important for camouflage. Divergence may reflect selection imposed by different receivers (conspecifics, predators), which depends in turn on the location of the colour patch. We tested for local adaptation of two genetically and phenotypically divergent lineages of a rock-inhabiting lizard, Ctenophorus decresii, by comparing the visual contrast of colour patches to different receivers in native and non-native environments. The lineages differ most notably in male throat coloration, which is polymorphic in the northern lineage and monomorphic in the southern lineage, but also differ in dorsal and lateral coloration, which is visible to both conspecifics and potential predators. Using models of animal colour vision, we assessed whether lineage-specific throat, dorsal and lateral coloration enhanced conspicuousness to conspecifics, increased crypsis to birds or both, respectively, when viewed against the predominant backgrounds from each lineage. Throat colours were no more conspicuous against native than non-native rock but contrasted more strongly with native lichen, which occurs patchily on rocks inhabited by C. decresii. Conversely, neck coloration (lateral) more closely matched native lichen. Furthermore, although dorsal coloration of southern males was consistently more conspicuous to birds than that of northern males, both lineages had similar absolute conspicuousness against their native backgrounds. Combined, our results are consistent with local adaptation of multiple colour traits in relation to multiple receivers, suggesting that geographic variation in background colour has influenced the evolution of lineage-specific coloration in C. decresii.

Usage Notes

Location

Olary Ranges
Kangaroo Island
Flinders Ranges
South Australia
Mt Lofty Ranges