Evaluating the drivers of Indo-Pacific biodiversity: speciation and dispersal of sea snakes (Elapidae: hydrophiinae)

Ukuwela, Kanishka D. B., Lee, Michael S. Y., Rasmussen, Arne R., de Silva, Anslem, Mumpuni, Fry, Bryan G., Ghezellou, Parviz, Rezaie-Atagholipour, Mohsen and Sanders, Kate L. (2016) Evaluating the drivers of Indo-Pacific biodiversity: speciation and dispersal of sea snakes (Elapidae: hydrophiinae). Journal of Biogeography, 43 2: 243-255. doi:10.1111/jbi.12636


Author Ukuwela, Kanishka D. B.
Lee, Michael S. Y.
Rasmussen, Arne R.
de Silva, Anslem
Mumpuni
Fry, Bryan G.
Ghezellou, Parviz
Rezaie-Atagholipour, Mohsen
Sanders, Kate L.
Title Evaluating the drivers of Indo-Pacific biodiversity: speciation and dispersal of sea snakes (Elapidae: hydrophiinae)
Journal name Journal of Biogeography   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1365-2699
0305-0270
Publication date 2016-02-01
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/jbi.12636
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 43
Issue 2
Start page 243
End page 255
Total pages 13
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Language eng
Subject 1105 Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
2303 Ecology
Abstract Aim: There are several competing hypotheses to explain the high species richness of the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA) marine biodiversity hotspot centred within Southeast (SE) Asia. We use phylogenetic methods to provide a novel perspective on this problem using viviparous sea snakes, a group with high species richness in the IAA that is highly distinct from other taxa previously studied, both phylogenetically (Reptilia, Amniota) and biologically (e.g.viviparity and direct development). Location: Indian Ocean and the West Pacific. Methods: We used likelihood and Bayesian methods to reconstruct a multi-locus time-calibrated phylogeny for c.70% of viviparous sea snake species, many sampled from multiple localities in Australasia, Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean. We then compared rates and temporal concordance of inferred vicariance and dispersal events between marine basins using several approaches including new Bayesian analyses that allow for clade-specific and event-specific dispersal rates. Results: Phylogenetic analyses and novel Bayesian biogeographical reconstructions indicate that viviparous sea snakes underwent rapid speciation after colonizing SE Asia c.3 million years ago. Most of the SE Asian sea snake diversity is the result of insitu speciation, most consistent with the 'centre of origin' and 'centre of refuge' models for biodiversity hotspots. There is also speciation at the periphery, or entirely outside SE Asia; however, contrary to predictions of the 'accumulation' and 'overlap' models, these new outlying taxa do not preferentially disperse back into SE Asia. Instead, lineages are equally likely to disperse either into or away from SE Asia. Main conclusion: The high diversity of sea snakes in SE Asia (and hence the IAA) is mostly explained by insitu speciation rather than accumulation or overlap. Most speciation events are contemporaneous with sea level changes that generated and dissolved barriers between marine basins during the last 2.5 million years.
Formatted abstract
Aim

There are several competing hypotheses to explain the high species richness of the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA) marine biodiversity hotspot centred within Southeast (SE) Asia. We use phylogenetic methods to provide a novel perspective on this problem using viviparous sea snakes, a group with high species richness in the IAA that is highly distinct from other taxa previously studied, both phylogenetically (Reptilia, Amniota) and biologically (e.g. viviparity and direct development).
Location

Indian Ocean and the West Pacific.
Methods

We used likelihood and Bayesian methods to reconstruct a multi-locus time-calibrated phylogeny for c. 70% of viviparous sea snake species, many sampled from multiple localities in Australasia, Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean. We then compared rates and temporal concordance of inferred vicariance and dispersal events between marine basins using several approaches including new Bayesian analyses that allow for clade-specific and event-specific dispersal rates.
Results

Phylogenetic analyses and novel Bayesian biogeographical reconstructions indicate that viviparous sea snakes underwent rapid speciation after colonizing SE Asia c. 3 million years ago. Most of the SE Asian sea snake diversity is the result of in situ speciation, most consistent with the ‘centre of origin’ and ‘centre of refuge’ models for biodiversity hotspots. There is also speciation at the periphery, or entirely outside SE Asia; however, contrary to predictions of the ‘accumulation’ and ‘overlap’ models, these new outlying taxa do not preferentially disperse back into SE Asia. Instead, lineages are equally likely to disperse either into or away from SE Asia.
Main conclusion

The high diversity of sea snakes in SE Asia (and hence the IAA) is mostly explained by in situ speciation rather than accumulation or overlap. Most speciation events are contemporaneous with sea level changes that generated and dissolved barriers between marine basins during the last 2.5 million years.
Keyword Biodiversity hotspot
Centre of origin
Coral Triangle
Evolutionary radiation
Indo-Australian Archipelago
Pleistocene
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
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