O'Donnell, Kelly .
Selection dynamics in natural populations of Fallopia japonica and Persicaria virginiana: a multi-season selection analysis.
Plant invasions represent natural experiments that allow us to both explore the dynamics of natural selection in the wild and examine the evolution of an invader on contemporary time scales. I conducted a three-year study of natural populations invasive Fallopia japonica (Japanese knotweed) and a native relative, Persicaria virginiana, to quantify the amount and direction of natural selection acting on these species to compare the selection dynamics to which each is exposed. Most selection was indirect and caused by correlations with other traits under selection. The means of the absolute value of the significant selection gradients for P. virginiana and F. japonica are 0.70 and 0.47, respectively. Both of these means are generally high for selection gradients detected in nature. Most of the significant gradients seem to be for height and leaf number, indicating that there is selection for both taller and leafier plants in these populations. There were no differences in the number of traits under selection between the two species. Selection gradients were quite variable from year to year, which has implications for predicting change in invading populations and can potentially explain the slow response of these populations to what seem to be quite strong selection pressures.
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1 - Stony Brook University, Ecology and Evolution, 650 Life Sciences Building, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY, 11794-5245, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: 555B/Convention Center
Date: Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010
Time: 9:15 AM