Browsing by Subject "DIAPAUSE"

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  • Ariza, Gloria Maria; Jacome, Jorge; Kotze, D. Johan (2021)
    The tropical dry forest (TDF) ecosystem is characterised by strong seasonality exasperated periodically by the El Nino/southern oscillation (ENSO). The environment produced by this event could constrain the survival of small organisms, such as insects. Carabid beetles were collected in a TDF in Armero, Colombia, during wet and dry seasons in both El Nino and non-El Nino periods. A series of traits linked to desiccation resistance were measured to characterise their adaptation to the TDF environment and to investigate changes experienced by carabid beetles during both episodes in quantitative (assemblage) and qualitative (traits) parameters. We found no difference in the presence of traits between El Nino and non-El Nino episodes, but carabid assemblages changed significantly in composition and assemblage structure between these episodes. During both periods, small-sized and nocturnal species dominated the assemblages, but in terms of number of individuals, medium and large-sized, and visual hunter species dominated. Calosoma alternans and Megacephala affinis were the most abundant species with high dispersal capacity. Carabid beetles exhibited morphological traits well-adapted to drought experienced in TDF, including when it is exasperated by ENSO. However, long-term studies can help to elucidate the real effects of ENSO and to confirm the adaptation of carabid beetles to cope with this extreme environment.
  • Scheuerl, Thomas; Stelzer, Claus-Peter (2017)
    Current theory proposes that sex can increase genetic variation and produce high fitness genotypes if genetic associations between alleles at different loci are non-random. In case beneficial and deleterious alleles at different loci are in linkage disequilibrium, sex may i) recombine beneficial alleles of different loci, ii) liberate beneficial alleles from genetic backgrounds of low fitness, or iii) recombine deleterious mutations for more effective elimination. In our study, we found that the first mechanism dominated the initial phase of adaptive evolution in Brachionus calyciflorus rotifers during a natural selection experiment. We used populations that had been locally adapted to two environments previously, creating a linkage disequilibrium between beneficial and deleterious alleles at different loci in a combined environment. We observed the highest fitness increase when several beneficial alleles of different loci could be recombined, while the other mechanisms were ineffective. Our study thus provides evidence for the hypothesis that sex can speed up adaptation by recombination between beneficial alleles of different loci, in particular during early stages of adaptive evolution in our system. We also suggest that the benefits of sex might change over time and state of adaptive progress.