Apidologie

, Volume 42, Issue 5, pp 579–595

Ecological niche overlap in sister species: how do oil-collecting bees Macropis europaea and Macropis fulvipes (Hymenoptera: Melittidae) avoid hybridization and competition?

  • Lucas Bassin
  • Nadir Alvarez
  • Loïc Pellissier
  • Yann Triponez
Original article

DOI: 10.1007/s13592-011-0067-z

Cite this article as:
Bassin, L., Alvarez, N., Pellissier, L. et al. Apidologie (2011) 42: 579. doi:10.1007/s13592-011-0067-z

Abstract

Oil-collecting bees are found worldwide and always in association with particular oil-producing flowers. In the Western Palearctic, three oil-collecting bee species within the genus Macropis (Hymenoptera, Melittidae) interact in a tight pollination mutualism with species of the only European oil-producing plant genus Lysimachia L. (Myrsinaceae). Two of these oil-collecting bees (Macropis europaea and Macropis fulvipes) show overlapping geographic distributions, comparable morphologies, and similar ecological characteristics (e.g., habitat type, floral preferences). In view of these similarities, we presume that hybridization should occur between the two species unless potential variation among the species’ ecological niches prevents it, simultaneously decreasing competition for resources. Using modern genetic analyses and ecological niche modeling on a large bee sampling throughout Europe, we discuss new perspectives on the ecology and evolutionary history of this mutualism.

Keywords

Macropis mutualism Lysimachia ecological niche hybridization 

Supplementary material

13592_2011_67_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.2 mb)
ESM 1(DOC 1.21 mb)

Copyright information

© INRA, DIB-AGIB and Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lucas Bassin
    • 1
  • Nadir Alvarez
    • 2
  • Loïc Pellissier
    • 2
  • Yann Triponez
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratoire d’Entomologie Evolutive, Institut de BiologieUniversité de NeuchâtelNeuchâtelSwitzerland
  2. 2.Département d’Ecologie et EvolutionUniversité de LausanneLausanneSwitzerland

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