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Brattstrom O.,University of Cambridge | Aduse-Poku K.,University of Cambridge | Collins S.C.,African Butterfly Research Institute | Brakefield P.M.,University of Cambridge
Zootaxa | Year: 2015

The ignobilis-group of the genus Bicyclus Kirby 1871 is revised. The species-group contains six species with a distinct wing pattern, but limited intraspecific variation, distributed across tropical African rainforest. We investigate a set of more than 1000 specimens from a range of museum collections, including some type material, and thoroughly update the bio-geographical knowledge for the group. We also describe two new species as members of the group. The included species are: Bicyclus ignobilis (Butler 1870) stat. rev., B. rileyi Condamin 1961, B. maesseni Condamin 1971, B. brakefieldi Brattström 2012, B. ottossoni sp. Nov. and B. vandeweghei sp. Nov. Due to observing a gradual morphological cline within B. ignobilis without any sharp transitions we suppress the previously identified subspecies B. ignobilis eurini Condamin & Fox 1963 syn. Nov. and B. ignobilis acutus Condamin 1965 syn. Nov. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.


Timmermans M.J.T.N.,Natural History Museum in London | Timmermans M.J.T.N.,Imperial College London | Baxter S.W.,University of Cambridge | Clark R.,Natural History Museum in London | And 14 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2014

The African Mocker Swallowtail, Papilio dardanus, is a textbook example in evolutionary genetics. Classical breeding experiments have shown that wing pattern variation in this polymorphic Batesian mimic is determined by the polyallelic H locus that controls a set of distinct mimetic phenotypes. Using bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequencing, recombination analyses and comparative genomics,we showthatHco-segregateswith an interval of less than 500 kb that is collinear with two other Lepidoptera genomes and contains 24 genes, including the transcription factor genes engrailed (en) and invected (inv). H is located in a region of conserved gene order, which argues against any role for genomic translocations in the evolution of a hypothesizedmulti-gene mimicry locus. Natural populations of P. dardanus show significant associations of specific morphs with single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), centred on en. In addition, SNP variation in the H region reveals evidence of non-neutral molecular evolution in the en gene alone. We find evidence for a duplication potentially driving physical constraints on recombination in the lamborni morph. Absence of perfect linkage disequilibrium between different genes in the other morphs suggests that H is limited to nucleotide positions in the regulatory and coding regions of en. Our results therefore support the hypothesis that a single gene underlies wing pattern variation in P. dardanus. © 2014 The Authors Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.


SAfiAn S.,University of West Hungary | Libert M.,rue Henry Barbet | Collins S.C.,African Butterfly Research Institute
Zootaxa | Year: 2013

Two new butterfly species belonging to the genus Aphnaeus (Lycaenidae: Theclinae), A. mirabilis sp. n., A. nimbaensis sp. n. were found in the Nimba Mountains, Western Range, Liberia in February 2012. Both are illustrated and described in comparison with closely related species: A. flavescens Stempffer, 1954 and A. liberti Bouyer, 1996, respectively. Gen-italia of the male holotype of A. nimbaensis are also illustrated. © 2013 Magnolia Press.


De Jong M.A.,Leiden University | De Jong M.A.,University of Helsinki | Collins S.,African Butterfly Research Institute | Beldade P.,Leiden University | And 5 more authors.
Molecular Ecology | Year: 2013

One of the major questions in ecology and evolutionary biology is how variation in the genome enables species to adapt to divergent environments. Here, we study footprints of thermal selection in candidate genes in six wild populations of the afrotropical butterfly Bicyclus anynana sampled along a c. 3000 km latitudinal cline. We sequenced coding regions of 31 selected genes with known functions in metabolism, pigment production, development and heat shock responses. These include genes for which we expect a priori a role in thermal adaptation and, thus, varying selection pressures along a latitudinal cline, and genes we do not expect to vary clinally and can be used as controls. We identified amino acid substitution polymorphisms in 13 genes and tested these for clinal variation by correlation analysis of allele frequencies with latitude. In addition, we used two FST-based outlier methods to identify loci with higher population differentiation than expected under neutral evolution, while accounting for potentially confounding effects of population structure and demographic history. Two metabolic enzymes of the glycolytic pathway, UGP and Treh, showed clinal variation. The same loci showed elevated population differentiation and were identified as significant outliers. We found no evidence of clines in the pigmentation genes, heat shock proteins and developmental genes. However, we identified outlier loci in more localized parts of the range in the pigmentation genes yellow and black. We discuss that the observed clinal variation and elevated population divergence in UGP and Treh may reflect adaptation to a geographic thermal gradient. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Mitter K.T.,University of Maryland University College | Larsen T.B.,Jacobys Alle 2 | De Prins W.,University of Amsterdam | De Prins J.,Royal Museum for Central Africa | And 7 more authors.
Systematic Entomology | Year: 2011

The Afrotropical butterfly subfamily Pseudopontiinae (Pieridae) was traditionally thought to comprise one species, with two subspecies (Pseudopontia paradoxa paradoxa Felder & Felder and Pseudopontia paradoxa australis Dixey) differing in a single detail of a hindwing vein. The two subspecies also differ in their known geographic distributions (mainly north of versus south of the equator). Unlike most butterflies, Pseudopontia is white with no visible wing or body markings. We now report that males of P. paradoxa australis have an area of ultraviolet-reflecting scales along the anal vein of the forewing, whereas males of P. paradoxa paradoxa and all females do not. A total of 21 individuals of the northern subspecies, which were collected in three localities south of the equator, were found in the collection of the Royal Museum for Central Africa, indicating sympatry of the two traditional subspecies in the Congo River basin. To determine if additional cryptic species might be present, we sequenced three nuclear genes (CAD, DDC and wingless) as well as cytochrome oxidase I (COI), examined amplified fragment-length polymorphisms, and re-examined wing and genitalic morphology, using recently collected specimens from several regions of Africa. Phylogenetic analyses of the COI sequences and amplified fragment-length polymorphism data concur, and indicate the existence of at least five monophyletic, non-interbreeding populations, with a particularly deep divergence between three populations of P. paradoxa paradoxa and two of P. paradoxa australis. Despite the slow rate of evolution of the nuclear genes studied, individual gene trees and a concatenated three-gene tree demonstrate, with high bootstrap support, clear divergence among the five populations of Pseudopontia. In addition, consistent variations in details of wing vein stalks were found among four of the genetically distinct populations, which supports the hypothesis of multiple species. Division of Pseudopontia into five phylogenetic species is proposed, including the elevation of ssp. australis to species rank and the description of Pseudopontia mabira, Pseudopontia gola and Pseudopontia zambezi. © 2010 The Authors. Systematic Entomology © 2010 The Royal Entomological Society.

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