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Species boundaries in the messy middle -- testing the hypothesis of micro-endemism in a recently diverged lineage of coastal fog desert lichen fungi
  • +11
  • Jesse Jorna,
  • Jackson Linde,
  • Peter Searle,
  • Abigail Jackson,
  • Mary-Elise Nielsen,
  • Madeleine Nate,
  • Natalie Saxton,
  • Felix Grewe,
  • María de los Angeles Herrera-Campos,
  • Richard Spjut,
  • Huini Wu,
  • Brian Ho,
  • Steven Leavitt,
  • Thorsten Lumbsch
Jesse Jorna
Brigham Young University
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Jackson Linde
Brigham Young University
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Peter Searle
Brigham Young University
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Abigail Jackson
Brigham Young University
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Mary-Elise Nielsen
Brigham Young University
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Madeleine Nate
Brigham Young University
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Natalie Saxton
Brigham Young University
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Felix Grewe
Field Museum of Natural History
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María de los Angeles Herrera-Campos
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México Instituto de Biología
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Richard Spjut
World Botanical Associates
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Huini Wu
Field Museum of Natural History
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Brian Ho
Field Museum of Natural History
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Steven Leavitt
Brigham Young University
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Thorsten Lumbsch
Field Museum of Natural History
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Abstract

Species delimitation among closely related species is challenging because traditional phenotype-based approaches, e.g., morphology, ecological, or chemical characteristics, often produce conflicting results. With the advent of high-throughput sequencing, it has become increasingly cost-effective to acquire genome-scale data which can resolve previously ambiguous species boundaries. As the availability of genome-scale data has increased, numerous species delimitation analyses, such as BPP and SNAPP+Bayes factor delimitation (BFD*), have been developed to delimit species boundaries. However, even empirical molecular species delimitation approaches can be biased by confounding evolutionary factors, e.g., hybridization/introgression and incomplete lineage sorting, and computational limitations. Here we investigate species boundaries and the potential for micro-endemism in a lineage of lichen-forming fungi, Niebla Rundel & Bowler in the family Ramalinaceae. The species delimitation models tend to support more specious groupings, but were unable to infer robust, consistent species delimitations. The results of our study highlight the problem of delimiting species, particularly in groups such as Niebla, with complex, recent phylogeographic histories.

Peer review status:ACCEPTED

29 Mar 2021Submitted to Ecology and Evolution
31 Mar 2021Submission Checks Completed
31 Mar 2021Assigned to Editor
05 Apr 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned
05 May 2021Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
24 May 2021Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
12 Jun 20211st Revision Received
12 Jun 2021Submission Checks Completed
12 Jun 2021Assigned to Editor
12 Jun 2021Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
07 Jul 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned
24 Aug 2021Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
22 Sep 20212nd Revision Received
23 Sep 2021Submission Checks Completed
23 Sep 2021Assigned to Editor
23 Sep 2021Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
25 Sep 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned
21 Oct 2021Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
01 Nov 20213rd Revision Received
02 Nov 2021Assigned to Editor
02 Nov 2021Submission Checks Completed
02 Nov 2021Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
16 Nov 2021Editorial Decision: Accept