Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of the dung beetle genus Temnoplectron Westwood (Scarabaeidae : Scarabaeinae) from Australia's wet tropics

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2004
Authors:K. L. Bell, Yeates, D. K., Moritz, C., Monteith, G. B.
Journal:Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Date Published:May
Accession Number:ISI:000220948000025
Keywords:biogeography, Dung beetles, molecular phylogeny, speciation, tropical rainforest

The landscape of the Australian Wet Tropics can be described as "islands" of montane rainforest Surrounded by warmer or more xeric habitats. Historical glaciation cycles have caused expansion and contraction of these rainforest "islands" leading to consistent patterns of genetic divergence within species of vertebrates. To explore whether this dynamic history has promoted speciation in endemic and diverse groups Of insects, we used a combination of mtDNA sequencing and morphological characters to estimate relationships and the tempo of divergence among Australian representatives of the dung beetle genus Temnoplectron. This phylogenetic hypothesis shares a number of well-supported clades with a previously published phylogenetic hypothesis based on morphological data. though statistical support for several nodes is weak. Sister species relationships well-supported in both tree topologies. and a tree obtained by combining the two data sets. suggest that speciation has mostly been allopatric. We identify a number of speciation barriers, which coincide with phylogeographic breaks found in vertebrate species. Large sequence divergences between species emphasize that speciation events are ancient (pre- Pleistocene). The flightless, rainforest species appear to have speciated rapidly. but also in the distant past.

URL:<Go to ISI>://000220948000025
Alternate Journal:Mol. Phylogenet. Evol.
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith