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Male competition fitness landscapes predict both forward and reverse speciation [Ecology Letters]

Keywords : fitness landscape, fitness peak, male competition, multivariate, reverse speciation, sexual selection, speciation, species collapse, stickleback

par Frédéric Magné - publié le

Speciation is facilitated when selection generates a rugged fitness landscape such that populations occupy different peaks separated by valleys. Competition for food resources is a strong ecological force that can generate such divergent selection. However, it is unclear whether intrasexual competition over resources that provide mating opportunities can generate rugged fitness landscapes that foster speciation. Here we use highly variable male F2 hybrids of benthic and limnetic threespine sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus Linnaeus, 1758, to quantify the male competition fitness landscape.(...)

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