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Data from: Recent speciation and secondary contact in endemic ants

Cite this dataset

Jowers, Michael J. et al. (2014). Data from: Recent speciation and secondary contact in endemic ants [Dataset]. Dryad.


Gene flow is the main force opposing divergent selection, and its effects are greater in populations in close proximity. Thus, complete reproductive isolation between parapatric populations is not expected, particularly in the absence of ecological adaptation and sharp environmental differences. Here, we explore the biogeographical patterns of an endemic ant species, Cataglyphis floricola, for which two colour morphs (black and bicolour) coexist in parapatry throughout continuous sandy habitat in southern Spain. Discriminant analyses of six biometric measurements of male genitalia and 27 cuticular hydrocarbons reveal high differentiation between morphs. Furthermore, the low number of shared alleles derived from nuclear markers (microsatellites) between the morphs at their contact zone suggests the absence of recent gene flow. Mitochondrial DNA (COI) phylogenetic analysis and median-joining networks show that the black morph is basal to the bicolour morph, with unique haplotypes recovered for each morph. Mismatch distribution analysis and Bayesian skyline plots suggest that they are undergoing different demographic changes, with the bicolour and black morphs at demographic equilibrium and expansion, respectively. Thus, our results show complete reproductive isolation between the two colour morphs as evidenced from genetic, chemical and morphological data. We suggest that these divergence events could be explained by historical vicariance during the Pleistocene, in which reproductive traits experienced strong divergent selection between the morphs initiating or culminating speciation.

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Southern Spain