Plasticity and evolutionary convergence in the locomotor skeleton of Greater Antillean Anolis lizards

  1. Nathalie Feiner  Is a corresponding author
  2. Illiam SC Jackson
  3. Kirke L Munch
  4. Reinder Radersma
  5. Tobias Uller
  1. Lund University, Sweden
  2. University of Tasmania, Australia

Abstract

Plasticity can put evolution on repeat if development causes species to generate similar morphologies in similar environments. Anolis lizards offer the opportunity to put this role of developmental plasticity to the test. Following colonization of the four Greater Antillean islands, Anolis lizards independently and repeatedly evolved six ecomorphs adapted to manoeuvring different microhabitats. By quantifying the morphology of the locomotor skeleton of 95 species, we demonstrate that ecomorphs on different islands have diverged along similar trajectories. However, microhabitat-induced morphological plasticity differed between species and did not consistently improve individual locomotor performance. Consistent with this decoupling between morphological plasticity and locomotor performance, highly plastic features did not show greater evolvability, and plastic responses to microhabitat were poorly aligned with evolutionary divergence between ecomorphs. The locomotor skeleton of Anolis may have evolved within a subset of possible morphologies that are highly accessible through genetic change, enabling adaptive convergence independently of plasticity.

Data availability

Raw scans are available at Morphosource under the project ID P1059, title 'Anolis sp.' (see source data file 1 for individual DOIs). The morphological raw data is available in the source data file 2. Supplementary file 1 contains Extended Methods and supplementary tables.

The following data sets were generated

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Nathalie Feiner

    Biology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
    For correspondence
    nathalie.feiner@biol.lu.se
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0003-4648-6950
  2. Illiam SC Jackson

    Biology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-7948-2860
  3. Kirke L Munch

    School of Biological Sciences, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Reinder Radersma

    Biology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Tobias Uller

    Biology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

Funding

John Templeton Foundation (60501)

  • Tobias Uller

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Animal experimentation: The study was conducted according to the Lund University Local Ethical Review Process under the permit number Dnr M 31-16.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Diethard Tautz, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Germany

Publication history

  1. Received: April 1, 2020
  2. Accepted: August 12, 2020
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: August 13, 2020 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: September 22, 2020 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2020, Feiner et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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  1. Nathalie Feiner
  2. Illiam SC Jackson
  3. Kirke L Munch
  4. Reinder Radersma
  5. Tobias Uller
(2020)
Plasticity and evolutionary convergence in the locomotor skeleton of Greater Antillean Anolis lizards
eLife 9:e57468.
https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.57468

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