Divergence in inflorescence height: An evolutionary response to pollinator fidelity

Keith D. Waddington

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The above-ground heights of inflorescences of 8 species of wild-flowers in a subalpine meadow in the Colorado Rocky Mountains were measured in two successive years. An index of overlap (of height-distributions) was computed for pairwise comparisons of all species. The species were assorted into 4 groups based on their usual pollinators: long-tongued bumblebees (3 species were pollinated by long-tongued bumblebees), short-tongued bumblebees (3 species), hummingbirds (1 species), and solitary bees (1 species). The values of the sample of overlap indices for plants pollinated by the same animals was significantly smaller than the values for plants pollinated by different animals; plants which share pollinators are less alike in height than those that don't share pollinators. It is suggested that this is a result of selection for enhancement of pollinator fidelity. The selective mechanisms, based on the 'horizontal' flight pattern of pollinators and the consequences to the plant of interspecific flights, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-50
Number of pages8
JournalOecologia
Volume40
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1979

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pollinating insects
pollinator
inflorescences
divergence
Bombus
flight
wild flowers
solitary bees
hummingbirds
Rocky Mountain region
meadows
animals
animal
bee
meadow
flower
mountain
sampling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology

Cite this

Divergence in inflorescence height : An evolutionary response to pollinator fidelity. / Waddington, Keith D.

In: Oecologia, Vol. 40, No. 1, 01.01.1979, p. 43-50.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Waddington, Keith D. / Divergence in inflorescence height : An evolutionary response to pollinator fidelity. In: Oecologia. 1979 ; Vol. 40, No. 1. pp. 43-50.
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