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Immigrant reproductive dysfunction facilitates ecological speciation

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  • Ola Svensson
  • Johanna Gräns
  • Malin C. Celander
  • Jonathan Havenhand
  • Erica H. Leder
  • Kai Lindström
  • Sofie Schöld
  • Cock van Oosterhout
  • Charlotta Kvarnemo

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Abstract

The distributions of species are not only determined by where they can survive – they must also be able to reproduce. Although immigrant inviability is a well-established concept, the fact that immigrants also need to be able to effectively reproduce in foreign environments has not been fully appreciated in the study of adaptive divergence and speciation. Fertilization and reproduction are sensitive life-history stages that could be detrimentally affected for immigrants in non-native habitats. We propose that “immigrant reproductive dysfunction” is a hitherto overlooked aspect of reproductive isolation caused by natural selection on immigrants. This idea is supported by results from experiments on an externally fertilizing fish (sand goby, Pomatoschistus minutus). Growth and condition of adults were not affected by non-native salinity whereas males spawning as immigrants had lower sperm motility and hatching success than residents. We interpret these results as evidence for local adaptation or acclimation of sperm, and possibly also components of paternal care. The resulting loss in fitness, which we call “immigrant reproductive dysfunction,” has the potential to reduce gene flow between populations with locally adapted reproduction, and it may play a role in species distributions and speciation.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2510–2521
Number of pages12
JournalEvolution
Volume71
Issue number10
Early online date20 Sep 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017
Peer-reviewedYes

Keywords

    Research areas

  • Ecological speciation, immigrant inviability, immigrant reproductive dysfunction, local adaptation, multifarious selection, transporter hypothesis

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