, Volume 125, Issue 2, pp 271-281

First online:

Variability of Wing Size and Shape in Three Populations of a Recent Brazilian Invader, Zaprionus indianus (Diptera: Drosophilidae), from Different Habitats

  • Roberta LohAffiliated withDepartamento de Genética, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • , Blanche Christine Bitner-MathéAffiliated withDepartamento de Genética, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro Email author 

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Zaprionus indianus (Diptera: Drosophilidae) is an African species that was introduced in Brazil near the end of the 1990’s decade. To evaluate the adaptive potential of morphological traits in natural populations of this recently introduced species, we have investigated wing size and shape variation at Rio de Janeiro populations only two years after the first record of Z. indianus in Brazil. Significant genetic differences among populations from three distinct ecological habitats were detected. The heritability and evolvability estimates show that, even with the population bottleneck that should have occurred during the invasion event, an appreciable amount of additive genetic variation for wing size and shape was retained. Our results also indicated a greater influence of environmental variation on wing size than on wing shape. The importance of quantitative genetic variability and plasticity in the successful establishment and dispersal of Z. indianus in the Brazilian territory is then discussed.


adaptation bioinvasion evolvability genetic variability morphological variability Zaprionus indianus