Evolutionary Biology

, Volume 40, Issue 2, pp 300–309

The Evolution of Wing Shape in Ornamented-Winged Damselflies (Calopterygidae, Odonata)

Research Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11692-012-9214-3

Cite this article as:
Outomuro, D., Adams, D.C. & Johansson, F. Evol Biol (2013) 40: 300. doi:10.1007/s11692-012-9214-3


Flight has conferred an extraordinary advantage to some groups of animals. Wing shape is directly related to flight performance and evolves in response to multiple selective pressures. In some species, wings have ornaments such as pigmented patches that are sexually selected. Since organisms with pigmented wings need to display the ornament while flying in an optimal way, we might expect a correlative evolution between the wing ornament and wing shape. We examined males from 36 taxa of calopterygid damselflies that differ in wing pigmentation, which is used in sexual displays. We used geometric morphometrics and phylogenetic comparative approaches to analyse whether wing shape and wing pigmentation show correlated evolution. We found that wing pigmentation is associated with certain wing shapes that probably increase the quality of the signal: wings being broader where the pigmentation is located. Our results also showed correlated evolution between wing pigmentation and wing shape in hind wings, but not in front wings, probably because hind wings are more involved in signalling than front wings. The results imply that the evolution of diversity in wing pigmentations and behavioural sexual displays might be an important driver of speciation due to important pre-copulatory selective pressures.


Geometric morphometrics Phylogeny Sexual signaling Wing pigmentation 

Supplementary material

11692_2012_9214_MOESM1_ESM.doc (152 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 152 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Outomuro
    • 1
  • Dean C. Adams
    • 2
  • Frank Johansson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Ecology and Genetics, Evolutionary Biology CentreUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal BiologyIowa State UniversityAmesUSA

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