Host-Plant Use, Diversification, and Coevolution: Insights from Remote Oceanic Islands

George K. Roderick and Diana M. Percy

in Specialization, Speciation, and Radiation

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780520251328
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520933828 | DOI:
Host-Plant Use, Diversification, and Coevolution: Insights from Remote Oceanic Islands

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Insects and flowering plants are among the most diverse macroorganisms on earth, and their mutual interactions provide little doubt that each group is in part responsible for the others' diversity. However, exactly how diversification of flowering plants has affected the diversity of insects, and vice versa, is not well understood for the vast majority of plant and insect groups. Studies of pollination systems illustrate how insects and plants are tightly tied to each others' diversity and show complex patterns of coevolution that can themselves be a locus for diversification. This chapter uses remote oceanic islands to focus on the evolutionary patterns of insect–plant interactions, host-plant use, diversification, and coevolution. It reviews studies that have used the features of remote islands to tease apart factors associated with recent host-associated diversification in an attempt to understand how host plants contribute to the process of insect speciation.

Keywords: remote oceanic islands; insects; diversification; plants; speciation; host-plant use; coevolution; insect–plant interactions

Chapter.  9282 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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