Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 24, Issue 11, pp 2751–2767 | Cite as

Phylogenetic diversity of regional beetle faunas at high latitudes: patterns, drivers and chance along ecological gradients

  • Jani HeinoEmail author
  • Janne Alahuhta
  • Simone Fattorini
Original Paper


Patterns in phylogenetic diversity are poorly known for many taxonomic groups, including hyperdiverse insect taxa. We contrasted patterns in the species richness and phylogenetic diversity of provincial beetle faunas in northern Europe (54°N to 71°N). We found that species richness and phylogenetic diversity varied rather predictably along ecogeographical gradients, with species richness and a proxy measure of phylogenetic diversity, average taxonomic distinctness (AvTD), decreasing from south to north and being strongly positively related to maximum temperature. A proxy measure of variation in phylogenetic diversity, variation in taxonomic distinctness (VarTD), was also strongly related to maximum temperature, but the relationship was negative. This was a novel finding, showing a reversed latitudinal gradient in biodiversity. In more than half of the provinces, AvTD value was significantly less than expected by chance. Also, more than half of the provinces showed significantly higher VarTD values than expected based on random draws of species. Our results showed that the phylogenetic diversity of beetle faunas is rather strongly associated with climatic gradients at high latitudes. Given that climatic variability and temperature extremes are correlated with phylogenetic diversity, climate change is likely to modify strongly this facet of diversity. Average phylogenetic diversity is likely to increase in the northernmost parts of the study area if climate and vegetation become more suitable for many southern beetle species. Our statistical approach to test chance expectations based on random draws of species from larger-scale species pool is highly flexible in tackling this question when true phylogenies are not available.


Climatic variability Precipitation variability Species richness Taxonomic distinctness Temperature 



We thank the Academy of Finland for financial support, and Maija Lantto and Riikka Savolainen for compiling the beetle data.

Supplementary material

10531_2015_963_MOESM1_ESM.doc (148 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 147 kb)


  1. Alahuhta J, Heino J, Luoto M (2011) Climate change and the future distribution of aquatic macrophytes across boreal catchments. J Biogeogr 38:383–393CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Anisimov OA, Vaughan DG, Callaghan TV, Furgal C, Marchant H, Prowse TD, Vilhjálmsson H, Walsh JE (2007) Polar regions (Arctic and Antarctic). Climate change 2007: impacts, adaptation and vulnerability. In: Parry ML, Canziani OF, Palutikof JP, van der Linden PJ, Hanson CE (eds) Contribution of Working Group II to the fourth assessment report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 653–685Google Scholar
  3. Baños-Picón L, Asís JD, Gayubo SF, Tormos J (2009) Analyzing insect community structure through the application of taxonomic distinctness measures. Zool Studies 48:298–314Google Scholar
  4. Betzholtz P-E, Petterson LB, Ryrholm N, Franzén M (2012) With that diet, you will go far: trait-based analysis reveals a link between rapid range expansion and nitrogen-favoured diet. Proc Royal Soc B. 280:2012–2305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bílý S (1982) The Buprestidae (Coleoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol Scand 10:1–110Google Scholar
  6. Bílý S, Mehl O (1989) Longhorn beetles (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol Scand 22:1–203Google Scholar
  7. Cadotte MW, Cavender-Bares J, Tilman D, Oakley TH (2009) Using phylogenetic, functional and trait diversity to understand patterns of plant community productivity. PLoS ONE 4:e5695PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Chatrou LW, Wieringa JJ, Couvreur TLP (2010) The impact of climate change on the origin and future of East African rainforest trees. In: Hodkinson TR, Jones MB, Waldren S, Parnell JAN (eds) Climate change, ecology and systematics. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 304–319Google Scholar
  9. Clarke KR, Warwick RM (1998) A taxonomic distinctness index and its statistical properties. J Appl Ecol 35:523–531CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Clarke KR, Warwick RM (2001a) A further biodiversity index applicable to species lists: variation in taxonomic distinctness. Mar Ecol Progr Ser 216:265–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Clarke KR, Warwick RM (2001b) Change in marine communities. An Approach to Statistical Analysis and Interpretation. PRIMER-E, PlymouthGoogle Scholar
  12. Cowie J (2013) Climate change. Biological and human aspects, 2nd edn. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  13. Currie DJ, Mittelbach GG, Cornell HV, Field R, Guégan J-F, Hawkins BA, Kaufman DM, Kerr JT, Oberdorff T, O’Brien E, Turner JRG (2004) Predictions and tests of climate-based hypotheses of broad-scale variation in taxonomic richness. Ecol Lett 7:1121–1134CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Danks HV (1992) Arctic insects as indicators of environmental change. Arctic 45:159–166CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Devictor V, Mouillot D, Meynard C, Jiguet F, Thuiller W, Mouquet N (2010) Spatial mismatch and congruence between taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional diversity: the need for integrative conservation strategies in a changing world. Ecol Lett 13:1030–1040PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Devictor V, van Swaay C, Brereton T, Brotons L, Chamberlain D, Heliölä J, Herrando S, Julliard R, Kuussaari M, Lindström Å, Reif J, Roy DB, Schweiger O, Settele J, Stefanescu C, Van Strien A, Van Turnhout C, Vermouzek Z, WallisDeVries M, Wynhoff I, Jiguet F (2012) Differences in the climatic debts of birds and butterflies at a continental scale. Nature Clim Chang 2:121–124CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Diniz-Filho JAF, Bini LM, Hawkins BA (2003) Spatial autocorrelation and red herrings in geographical ecology. Global Ecol Biogeogr 12:53–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Diniz-Filho JAF, De Marco Jr P, Hawkins BA (2010) Defying the curse of ignorance: perspectives in insect macroecology and conservation biogeography. Ins Cons Divers 3:172–179Google Scholar
  19. Fattorini S (2014) Disentangling the effects of available area, mid-domain constraints, and species environmental tolerance on the altitudinal distribution of tenebrionid beetles in a Mediterranean area. Biodivers Conserv 23:2545–2560CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fattorini S, Ulrich W (2012a) Drivers of species richness in European Tenebrionidae (Coleoptera). Acta Oecol 36:255–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Fattorini S, Ulrich W (2012b) Spatial distributions of European Tenebrionidae point to multiple postglacial colonization trajectories. Biol J Linn Soc 105:318–329CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Fordham DA, Akçakaya HR, Araújo M, Brook BW (2013) Modeling range shifts for invasive vertebrates in response to climate change. In: Brodie JF, Post E, Doak D (eds) Wildlife conservation in a changing climate. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp 86–108Google Scholar
  23. Fox J (2005) The R commander: a basic statistics graphical user interface to R. J Stat Soft 14:1–42Google Scholar
  24. Fritz SA, Rahbek C (2012) Global patterns of amphibian phylogenetic diversity. J Biogeogr 39:1373–1382CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hansen M (1987) The Hydrophiloidea of fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol Scand 18:1–254CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hawkins BA, Diniz-Filho JAF (2004) ‘Latitude’ and geographic patterns in species richness. Ecography 27:268–272CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hawkins BA, Porter EE, Diniz-Filho JAF (2003) Productivity and history as predictors of the latitudinal diversity gradient of terrestrial birds. Ecology 84:1608–1623CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hawkins BA, Diniz-Filho JAF, Jaramillo CA, Soeller SA (2007) Climate, niche conservatism and the global bird diversity gradient. Am Nat 170:516–527CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Heino J (2001) Regional gradient analysis of freshwater biota: do similar biogeographic patterns exist among multiple taxonomic groups?. J Biogeogr 28:69–77CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Heino J, Alahuhta J (2015) Elements of regional beetle faunas: faunal variation and compositional breakpoints along climate, land cover and geographical gradients. J Anim Ecol 84:427–441CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. Heino J, Mykrä H, Hämäläinen H, Aroviita J, Muotka T (2007) Responses of taxonomic distinctness and species diversity indices to anthropogenic impacts and natural environmental gradients in stream macroinvertebrates. Freshwat Biol 52:1846–1861CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Heino J, Virkkala R, Toivonen H (2009) Climate change and freshwater biodiversity: detected patterns, future trends and adaptations in northern regions. Biol Rev 84:39–54CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Hewitt GM (1999) Post-glacial re-colonization of European biota. Biol J Linn Soc 68:87–112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Hickling R, Roy DB, Hill JK, Fox R, Thomas CD (2006) The distributions of a wide range of taxonomic groups are expanding polewards. Glob Change Biol 12:450–455CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Hidasi-Neto J, Loyola R, Cianciaruso MV (2015) Global and local evolutionary and ecological distinctiveness of terrestrial mammals: identifying priorities across scales. Divers Distr 21(5):548–549CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Hijmans RJ, Cameron SE, Parra JL, Jones PG, Jarvis A (2005) Very high resolution interpolated climate surfaces for global land areas. Int J Climat 25:1965–1978CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Hodkinson ID (2005) Terrestrial insects along elevation gradients: species and community responses to altitude. Biol Rev 80:489–513CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Holmen M (1987) The aquatic adephaga (Coleoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark, Volume I. Gyrinidae, Haliplidae. Hygrobiidae and Noteridae. Fauna Entomol Scand 20:1–168Google Scholar
  39. IPCC (2014) Climate Change. Synthesis Report. Available at:
  40. Kaspari M, O’Donnell S, Kercher JR (2000) Energy, density, and constraints to species richness: ant assemblages along a productivity gradient. Am Nat 155:280–293CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  41. Keil P, Dziock F, Storch D (2008) Geographical patterns of hoverfly (Diptera, Syrphidae) functional groups in Europe: inconsistency in environmental correlates and latitudinal trends. Ecol Entomol 33:748–757Google Scholar
  42. Kerr JT, Southwood TRE, Cihlar J (2001) Remotely sensed habitat diversity predicts butterfly species richness and community similarity in Canada. Proc Nat Acad Sci 98:11365–11370PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. Kühn I, Dormann CF (2012) Less than eight (and a half) misconceptions of spatial analysis. J Biogeogr 39:995–998CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Leather SR (2009) Taxonomic chauvinism threatens the future of entomology. Biologist 56:10–13Google Scholar
  45. Legendre P, Legendre L (2012) Numerical ecology, 3rd edn. Elsevier, AmsterdamGoogle Scholar
  46. Lenton TM, Held H, Kriegler E, Hall JW, Lucht W, Rahmstorf S, Schellnhuber HJ (2008) Tipping elements in the Earth’s climate system. Proc Nat Acad Sci 105:1786–1793PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  47. Lindroth CH (1985) The Carabidae (Coleoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol Scand 15:1–225Google Scholar
  48. Lindroth CH (1986) The Carabidae (Coleoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol Scand 15:226–497Google Scholar
  49. Lomolino MV, Riddle BR, Whittaker RJ, Brown JH (2010) Biogeography, 4th edn. Sinauer Associates Inc., SunderlandGoogle Scholar
  50. Luz Ribeiro P, Rapini A, Soares e Silva UC, Ungareti Paleo Konno T, Santos Damascena L, van den Berg C (2012) Spatial analyses of the phylogenetic diversity of Minaria (Apocynaceae): assessing priority areas for conservation in the Espinhaço Range, Brazil. Syst Biodiv 10:317–331CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Magurran A (2004) Measuring biological diversity. Blackwell Publishing, MaldenGoogle Scholar
  52. Malcolm JR, Liu C, Neilson RP, Hansen L, Hannah L (2006) Global warming and extinctions of endemic species from biodiversity hotspots. Cons Biol 20:538–548CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Mazel F, Guilhaumon F, Mouquet N, Devictor V, Gravel D, Renaud J, Cianciaruso MV, Loyola R, Diniz-Filho JAF, Mouillot D, Thuiller W (2014) Multifaceted diversity–area relationships reveal global hotspots of mammalian species, trait and lineage diversity. Glob Ecol Biogeogr 23(8):836–847PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  54. Mouquet N, Devictor V, Meynard CN, Munoz F, Bersier LF, Chave J, Couteron P, Dalecky A, Fontaine C, Gravel D, Hardy OJ, Jabot F, Lavergne S, Leibold M, Mouillot D, Munkemuller T, Pavoine S, Prinzing A, Rodrigues ASL, Rohr RP, Thebault E, Thuiller W (2012) Ecophylogenetics: advances and perspectives. Biol Rev 87:769–785CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  55. Nilsson AN, Holmen M (1995) The aquatic adephaga of Fennoscandia and Denmark 2. Dytiscidae. Fauna Entomol Scand 32:1–188Google Scholar
  56. Oksanen J, Blanchet FG, Kindt R, Legendre P, Minchin PR, O’Hara RB, Simpson GL, Solymos P, Stevens MHH, Wagner H (2014). vegan: Community Ecology Package. R package version 2.2-0.
  57. Paradis E, Claude J, Strimmer K (2004) APE: analyses of phylogenetics and evolution in R language. Bioinformatics 20:289–290CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  58. Parmesan C (2006) Ecological and evolutionary responses to recent climate change. Annu Rev Ecol Evol Syst 37:637–669CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Pio DV, Engler R, Linder HP, Monadjem A, Cotterill FPD, Taylor PJ, Schoeman MC, Price BW, Villet MH, Eick G, Salamin N, Guisan A (2014) Climate change effects on animal and plant phylogenetic diversity in southern Africa. Glob Change Biol 20:1538–1549CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Posadas P, Esquivel DR, Crisci JV (2001) Using phylogenetic diversity measures to set priorities in conservation: an example from southern South America. Biol Cons 15:1325–1334CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Purvis A, Gittleman JL, Brooks T (Eds) (2005) Phylogeny and conservation. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  62. Rahbek C, Graves GR (2001) Multiscale assessment of patterns of avian species richness. Proc Nat Acad Sci 98:4534–4539PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  63. Ricklefs RE, Jenkins DG (2011) Biogeography and ecology: towards the integration of two disciplines. Phil Trans Royal Soc B 266:2438–2448CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Ricklefs RE, Hong Q, White PS (2004) The region effect on mesoscale plant species richness between eastern Asia and eastern North America. Ecography 27:129–136CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Ricotta C, Bacaro G, Marignani M, Godefroid S, Mazzoleni S (2012) Computing diversity from dated phylogenies and taxonomic hierarchies: does it make a difference to the conclusions? Oecologia 170:501–506CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  66. Rödder D, Schmidtlein S, Schick S, Lötters S (2011) Climate envelope models in systematics and evolutionary research: theory and practice. In: Hodkinson TR, Jones MB, Waldren S, Parnell JAN (eds) Climate change. Cambridge University Press, Ecology and Systematics, pp 243–264Google Scholar
  67. Rosenzweig ML (1995) Species diversity in space and time. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Rull V (2014) Macrorefugia and microrefugia: a response to Tzedakis et al. Trends Ecol Evol 22:243–244CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Sanders NJ (2002) Elevational gradients in ant species richness: area, geometry, and Rapoport’s rule. Ecography 25:25–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Schneeweiss GM, Schönswetter P (2011) A re-appraisal of nunatak survival in arctic-alpine phylogeography. Mol Ecol 20:190–192CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  71. Srivastava DS, Cadotte MW, MacDonald AA, Marushia RG, Mirotchnick N (2012) Phylogenetic diversity and the functioning of ecosystems. Ecol Lett 15:637–648CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  72. Stevens GC (1992) The elevational gradient in altitudinal range: an extension of Rapoport’s latitudinal rule to altitude. Am Nat 140:893–911CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  73. Stewart JR, Lister AM, Barnes I, Dalén L (2010) Refugia revisited: individualistic responses of species in space and time. Proc R Soc B 277:661–671PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  74. Strecker AL, Olden JD, Whittier JB, Paukert CP (2011) Defining conservation priorities for freshwater fishes according to taxonomic, functional, and phylogenetic diversity. Ecol Appl 21:3002–3013CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Thomas MC (2008) Beetles (Coleoptera). In: Capinera JL (ed) Encyclopedia of entomology, 2nd edn. Springer, Berlin, pp 437–447Google Scholar
  76. Thomas CD, France AMA, Hill JK (2006) Range retractions and extinction in the face of climate warming. Trends Ecol Evol 21:415–416CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  77. Thuiller W, Lavergne S, Roquet C, Boulangeat I, Lafourcade B, Araujo MB (2011) Consequences of climate change on the tree of life in Europe. Nature 470:531–534CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  78. Tolimieri N, Anderson MJ (2010) Taxonomic distinctness of demersal fishes of the California current: moving beyond simple measures of diversity for marine ecosystem-based management. PLoS ONE 5:e10653PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  79. Tzedakis PC, Emerson BC, Hewitt GM (2013) Cryptic or mystic? Glacial tree refugia in northern Europe. Trends Ecol Evol 28:696–704CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  80. Väisänen R, Heliövaara K (1994) Hot-spots of insect diversity in northern Europe. Ann Zool Fenn 31:71–81Google Scholar
  81. Väisänen R, Heliövaara K, Immonen A (1992) Biogeography of northern European insects: province records in multivariate analysis (Saltatoria, Lepidoptera: Sesiidae; Coleoptera: Bubrestidae, Cerambycidae). Ann Zool Fenn 28:57–81Google Scholar
  82. Wang Z, Brown JH, Tang Z, Fang J (2009) Temperature dependence, spatial scale, and tree species diversity in eastern Asia and North America. Proc Nat Acad Sci 106:1388–1392Google Scholar
  83. Warwick RM, Clarke KR (1995) New “biodiversity” measures reveal a decrease in taxonomic distinctness with increasing stress. Mar Ecol Progr Ser 129:301–305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Winter M, Devictor V, Schweiger O (2013) Phylogenetic diversity and nature conservation: where are we? Trends Ecol Evol 28:199–204CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Natural Environment Centre, BiodiversityFinnish Environment InstituteOuluFinland
  2. 2.Department of GeographyUniversity of OuluOuluFinland
  3. 3.Azorean Biodiversity Group (Center for Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Changes – CE3C) and Platform for Enhancing Ecological Research and Sustainability (PEERS)Universidade dos AçoresAngra Do Heroísmo, TerceiraPortugal

Personalised recommendations