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Oecologia

pp 1–11 | Cite as

Does range expansion modify trait covariation? A study of a northward expanding dragonfly

  • Allan RaffardEmail author
  • Lieven Therry
  • Fia Finn
  • Kamilla Koch
  • Tomas Brodin
  • Simon Blanchet
  • Julien Cote
Global change ecology – original research

Abstract

The adaptive value of correlations among phenotypic traits depends on the prevailing environmental conditions. Differences in selection pressures during species range expansions may therefore shape phenotypic integration. In this study, we assessed variation in behavioral and morphological traits, as well as their covariations, in replicated southern and northern European populations of the northward expanding dragonfly Crocothemis erythraea. Larvae from northern populations were, on average, darker in color, and therefore, better camouflaged than larvae from southern populations. However, there was no difference in activity level. Darkness and activity were positively correlated in larvae from northern populations, whereas this trait covariation was missing in southern populations. This suggests the emergence of alternative strategies in time-limited northern populations, a higher activity level that required better camouflage through darker coloration, while less active larvae benefited from an energy-saving strategy by reducing the investment in costly traits, such as body darkness. We further found that larger larvae emerged into larger adults, with a higher investment in flight morphology. Our findings imply that phenotypic integration is associated with the northward range shift, potentially differentially shaping fitness consequences, and ecological interactions in southern versus northern populations.

Keywords

Behavior Climate change Colonization Growth–predation trade-off Phenotypic architecture Range expansion 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We kindly thank the people that guided us to populations and helped collecting the samples: Yohan Morizet, Philippe Lambret, Charlotte Sohier, Hajnalka Gyulavári, Diana Goertzen and Frank Suhling. ANB-Belgium, Indre Nature, Grand Port Maritime de Marseille and Département Environnement et Aménagement provided permission and access to populations. This study is part of the project PROBIS (Biodiversa) and financially supported by ONEMA, DFG and SEPA. JC is supported by an ANR-12-JSV7-0004-01. JC and SB are part of the Laboratoire d’Excellence (LABEX) entitled TULIP (ANR-10-LABX-41).

Author contribution statement

LT, FF, SB and JC conceived and designed the experiment. LT, FF and KK conducted fieldwork and performed the experiment. LT and AR analyzed the data with input from SB and JC. LT wrote the first draft, AR wrote the revised version and all authors contributed to these versions.

Compliance with ethical standards

All applicable institutional and/or national guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 524 kb)
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Supplementary material 3 (DOCX 28 kb)
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Supplementary material 4 (XLS 130 kb)
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Supplementary material 5 (XLS 713 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre Nationale Pour la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)Université Paul Sabatier (UPS), Station d’Écologie Théorique et Expérimentale, UMR 5321MoulisFrance
  2. 2.Department of Aquaculture and Fish BiologyHólar University CollegeSauðárkrókurIceland
  3. 3.Institute of Life and Environmental Science, University of IcelandReykjavíkIceland
  4. 4.Department of Evolutionary EcologyJohannes Gutenberg-University MainzMainzGermany
  5. 5.Department of Ecology and Environmental ScienceUmeå UniversityUmeåSweden
  6. 6.CNRS, UPS, IRD, Laboratoire Évolution et Diversité BiologiqueUMR 5174ToulouseFrance

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