Contrasting patterns of Andean diversification among three diverse clades of Neotropical clearwing butterflies

Nicolas Chazot, Donna Lisa De-Silva, Keith R. Willmott, André V.L. Freitas, Gerardo Lamas, James Mallet, Carlos E. Giraldo, Sandra Uribe, Marianne Elias

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The Neotropical region is the most biodiverse on Earth, in a large part due to the highly diverse tropical Andean biota. The Andes are a potentially important driver of diversification within the mountains and for neighboring regions. We compared the role of the Andes in diversification among three subtribes of Ithomiini butterflies endemic to the Neotropics, Dircennina, Oleriina, and Godyridina. The diversification patterns of Godyridina have been studied previously. Here, we generate the first time-calibrated phylogeny for the largest ithomiine subtribe, Dircennina, and we reanalyze a published phylogeny of Oleriina to test different biogeographic scenarios involving the Andes within an identical framework. We found common diversification patterns across the three subtribes, as well as major differences. In Dircennina and Oleriina, our results reveal a congruent pattern of diversification related to the Andes with an Andean origin, which contrasts with the Amazonian origin and multiple Andean colonizations of Godyridina. In each of the three subtribes, a clade diversified in the Northern Andes at a faster rate. Diversification within Amazonia occurred in Oleriina and Godyridina, while virtually no speciation occurred in Dircennina in this region. Dircennina was therefore characterized by higher diversification rates within the Andes compared to non-Andean regions, while in Oleriina and Godyridina, we found no difference between these regions. Our results and discussion highlight the importance of comparative approaches in biogeographic studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3965-3982
Number of pages18
JournalEcology and Evolution
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
?NRS ATIP : Action Thématique et Incitative sur Programme; French National Research Agency grant SPEREP , Grant/Award Number: ANR-14-?E02-0011-01; Ecole Doctorale 227 (France); Lund University (Sweden); FAPESP, Grant/Award Number: BIOTA-FAPESP 2011/50225-3, 2012/50260-6 and 2013/50297-0; Brazilian Research ?ouncil-?NPq, Grant/Award Number: 302585/2011-7, 303834/2015-3 and 563332/2010-7; SISBIOTA-Brasil/?NPq; Dimensions US-Biota-São Paulo; US NSF; NASA; National Science Foundation (NSF), Grant/Award Number: DEB-1256742 and DEB-0639861; Florida Natural History Museum Associates; National Geographic Society, NSF; Leverhulme Trust; Darwin Initiative

Funding Information:
This project was funded by an ATIP (?NRS, France) grant awarded to ME and LDS’s postdoc was funded by this grant. ME also acknowledges support from the French National Research Agency grant SPE?REP (ANR-14-?E02-0011-01). N? was funded by a doctoral fellowship from Ecole Doctorale 227 (France) and Lund University (Sweden). We thank authorities and counterparts at institutions in Peru, Ecuador, and Brazil (I?MBio) for delivering research and collection permits, as well as many assistants for their help in the field. Molecular work was performed at the GenePool (University of Edinburgh, UK), ?BMEG-Unicamp (Brazil), and the Service de Systématique Moléculaire UMS2700 of the MNHN (France). AVLF

Funding Information:
thanks Luiza M. Magaldi for helping with molecular work and also acknowledges support from the FAPESP (BIOTA-FAPESP 2011/50225-3); from Brazilian Research ?ouncil-NP q (grants 302585/2011-7, 303834/2015-3, and SISBIOTA-Brasil/NP q -563332/2010-7); from two collaborative grants of “Dimensions US-Biota-São Paulo,” US NSF, NASA, and FAPESP (grants 2012/50260-6 and 2013/50297-0); and from the National Science Foundation (NSF) (DEB-1256742). KRW also acknowledges support from the Florida Natural History Museum Associates, the National Geographic Society, NSF (DEB-0639861), the Leverhulme Trust, and the Darwin Initiative.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 The Authors. Ecology and Evolution published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • Andes
  • Dircennina
  • Ithomiini
  • Lepidoptera
  • Neotropics
  • Oleriina
  • biogeography
  • trait-dependent diversification


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