Causes and Consequences of Hybridization – from Behaviour to Evolution
Male common wall lizards in western Italy exhibit exaggeration of a suite of sexually selected characters, including morphology, colouration and behavior. These characters allow them to outcompete males from other lineages that lack these characters. We have shown that this results in asymmetric hybridization and adaptive introgression of the suite of characters following secondary contact.
Our current research, funded by the Swedish Research Council, is extending this work in several directions. Our aims are to test if genomic and developmental modularity facilitated the evolutionary origin and adaptive introgression of this suite of characters, and to identify what – if anything – that limits introgression and how repeatable this evolutionary process is across different contact zones.
If you want to know more
MacGregor, H.E.A., Lewandowsky, R.A.M., d’Ettorre, P., Leroy, C., Davies, N.W., While, G.M. & Uller, T. 2017. Chemical communication, sexual selection, and introgression in wall lizards. Evolution 71:2327-2343
MacGregor, H.E.A., While, G.M., Barrett, J., Perez I de Lanuza, G., Carazo, P., Michaelides, S. & Uller, T. 2016. Experimental contact zones reveal causes and targets of sexual selection in hybridizing lizards. Functional Ecology 31: 742-752
Heathcote, R., MacGregor, H., Sciberras, J., While, G.M., D’Ettorre, P. & Uller, T. 2016. Male behaviour drives assortative reproduction during the initial stage of secondary contact in lizards. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 29:1003-1015
While, G.M., Michaelides, S., Heathcote, R.J.P., MacGregor, H.E.A., Zajac, N., Beninde, J., Carazo, P., Pérez i de Lanuza, G., Sacchi, R., Zuffi, M.A.L., Horváthová, T., Fresnillo, B., Schulte, U., Veith, M., Hochkirch A. & Uller, T. 2015. Sexual selection drives asymmetric introgression in wall lizards. Ecology Letters 18:1366-1375