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  1. Eaton, Deren (Ed.)
    Abstract Applications of molecular phylogenetic approaches have uncovered evidence of hybridization across numerous clades of life, yet the environmental factors responsible for driving opportunities for hybridization remain obscure. Verbal models implicating geographic range shifts that brought species together during the Pleistocene have often been invoked, but quantitative tests using paleoclimatic data are needed to validate these models. Here, we produce a phylogeny for Heuchereae, a clade of 15 genera and 83 species in Saxifragaceae, with complete sampling of recognized species, using 277 nuclear loci and nearly complete chloroplast genomes. We then employ an improved framework with a coalescent simulation approach to test and confirm previous hybridization hypotheses and identify one new intergeneric hybridization event. Focusing on the North American distribution of Heuchereae, we introduce and implement a newly developed approach to reconstruct potential past distributions for ancestral lineages across all species in the clade and across a paleoclimatic record extending from the late Pliocene. Time calibration based on both nuclear and chloroplast trees recovers a mid- to late-Pleistocene date for most inferred hybridization events, a timeframe concomitant with repeated geographic range restriction into overlapping refugia. Our results indicate an important role for past episodes of climate change, and the contrasting responses of species with differing ecological strategies, in generating novel patterns of range contact among plant communities and therefore new opportunities for hybridization. The new ancestral niche method flexibly models the shape of niche while incorporating diverse sources of uncertainty and will be an important addition to the current comparative methods toolkit. [Ancestral niche reconstruction; hybridization; paleoclimate; pleistocene.] 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 19, 2024
  2. Eaton, Deren (Ed.)
    Abstract Color polymorphism—two or more heritable color phenotypes maintained within a single breeding population—is an extreme type of intraspecific diversity widespread across the tree of life. Color polymorphism is hypothesized to be an engine for speciation, where morph loss or divergence between distinct color morphs within a species results in the rapid evolution of new lineages, and thus, color polymorphic lineages are expected to display elevated diversification rates. Multiple species in the lizard family Lacertidae are color polymorphic, making them an ideal group to investigate the evolutionary history of this trait and its influence on macroevolution. Here, we produce a comprehensive species-level phylogeny of the lizard family Lacertidae to reconstruct the evolutionary history of color polymorphism and test if color polymorphism has been a driver of diversification. Accounting for phylogenetic uncertainty with multiple phylogenies and simulation studies, we estimate an ancient origin of color polymorphism (111 Ma) within the Lacertini tribe (subfamily Lacertinae). Color polymorphism most likely evolved few times in the Lacertidae and has been lost at a much faster rate than gained. Evolutionary transitions to color polymorphism are associated with shifts in increased net diversification rate in this family of lizards. Taken together, our empirical results support long-standing theoretical expectations that color polymorphism is a driver of diversification.[Color polymorphism; Lacertidae; state-dependent speciation extinction models; trait-dependent diversification.] 
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