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The relative roles of cultural drift and acoustic adaptation in shaping syllable repertoires of island bird populations change with time since colonization
Potvin, Dominique A
Clegg, S M
In birds, song divergence often precedes and facilitates divergence of other traits. We assessed the relative roles of cultural drift, innovation, and acoustic adaptation in divergence of island bird dialects, using silvereyes (Zosterops lateralis). In recently colonized populations, syllable diversity was not significantly lower than source populations, shared syllables between populations decreased with increasing number of founder events, and dialect variation displayed contributions from both habitat features and drift. The breadth of multivariate space occupied by recently colonized Z. l. lateralis populations was comparable to evolutionarily old forms that have diverged over thousands to hundreds of thousands of years. In evolutionarily old subspecies, syllable diversity was comparable to the mainland and the amount of variation in syllable composition explained by habitat features increased by two- to threefold compared to recently colonized populations. Together these results suggest that cultural drift influences syllable repertoires in recently colonized populations, but innovation likely counters syllable loss from colonization. In evolutionarily older populations, the influence of acoustic adaptation increases, possibly favoring a high diversity of syllables. These results suggest that the relative importance of cultural drift and acoustic adaptation changes with time since colonization in island bird populations, highlighting the value of considering multiple mechanisms and timescale of divergence when investigating island song divergence. © 2014 The Society for the Study of Evolution.
Evolution / Vol. 69, No. 2, pp.368-380
Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
FoR 0603 (Evolutionary Biology)
FoR 0602 (Ecology)
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