Skogen, Krissa A. , Raguso, Robert A. , Fant, Jeremie , Hilpman, Evan T. , Kelso, Sylvia , Roberts, Quincy .
Fragmented fragrances: habitat modification, population structure and reproductive ecology in a rare prairie endemic, Oenothera harringtonii.
Habitat fragmentation can alter landscapes in ways that have important consequences to both plant and pollinator populations. For plant species that rely on long-distance pollinators (e.g. hawkmoths) for reproductive success, habitat fragmentation may alter population genetic patterns in distinct and predictable ways. Floral cues to which pollinators respond, including floral morphology, scent chemistry and nectar sugar concentrations, may change in fragmented areas due to restricted gene flow and increased inbreeding in the resultant small, isolated populations. Our study species is Oenothera harringtonii (Harrington’s evening primrose, Onagraceae), an annual endemic to southeastern Colorado that occurs in a landscape increasingly fragmented by human activities. The showy, night-blooming flowers of O. harringtonii are pollinated primarily by hawkmoths, and secondarily by matinal bees. Hawkmoth visitation to O. harringtonii may be lower in fragmented areas due to increased visability (via light pollution) to predators and changes to flight patterns and dispersal. A decrease in hawkmoth visitation may result in increases in population differentiation in fragmented areas, where populations may be more commonly pollinated by bees. Unlike hawkmoths, bees tend to forage locally and thus contribute less frequently to long distance gene flow. Oenothera harringtonii is an annual, and as such, genetic consequences of habitat fragmentation may be seen in just a few generations. Here we present data on population size (vegetative and reproductive), floral morphology, scent chemistry and nectar sugar concentration of plants from seven populations (three fragmented, four not fragmented). We also test whether patterns of variation in floral fragrance are similar to those of neutral genetic variation, as revealed by microsatellite markers. The scent chemistry of O. harringtonii shows enough qualitative and quantitative variation in scent composition to provide an excellent test of the impact of fragmentation on traits linked to pollinator attraction.
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1 - Chicago Botanic Garden, Division of Plant Science and Conservation, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL, 60022, USA
2 - Cornell University, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior , W355 Seeley G. Mudd Hall, Ithaca, NY, 14853, USA
3 - Chicago Botanic Garden, Plant Science and Conservation, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL, 60022, USA
4 - Colorado College, Department of Biology, Colorado Springs, CO, 80903, USA
5 - Colorado College, Biology Department, 14 E. Cache La Poudre, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 80903, USA
6 - Lake Forest College, Department of Biology, Lake Forest, IL, 60045, USA
Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Topics
Location: Event Tent/Cliff Lodge
Date: Monday, July 27th, 2009
Time: 5:30 PM