More rapid climate change promotes evolutionary rescue through selection for increased dispersal distance
Article first published online: 25 SEP 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Evolutionary Applications published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
Volume 6, Issue 2, pages 353–364, February 2013
How to Cite
Boeye, J., Travis, J. M. J., Stoks, R. and Bonte, D. (2013), More rapid climate change promotes evolutionary rescue through selection for increased dispersal distance. Evolutionary Applications, 6: 353–364. doi: 10.1111/eva.12004
- Issue published online: 18 FEB 2013
- Article first published online: 25 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 AUG 2012
- Manuscript Received: 16 APR 2012
- FWO. Grant Numbers: G.0057.09, G.0610.11
- climate change;
- evolution of dispersal kernels;
- evolutionary rescue;
- individual-based model;
- range expansions
Species can either adapt to new conditions induced by climate change or shift their range in an attempt to track optimal environmental conditions. During current range shifts, species are simultaneously confronted with a second major anthropogenic disturbance, landscape fragmentation. Using individual-based models with a shifting climate window, we examine the effect of different rates of climate change on the evolution of dispersal distances through changes in the genetically determined dispersal kernel. Our results demonstrate that the rate of climate change is positively correlated to the evolved dispersal distances although too fast climate change causes the population to crash. When faced with realistic rates of climate change, greater dispersal distances evolve than those required for the population to keep track of the climate, thereby maximizing population size. Importantly, the greater dispersal distances that evolve when climate change is more rapid, induce evolutionary rescue by facilitating the population in crossing large gaps in the landscape. This could ensure population persistence in case of range shifting in fragmented landscapes. Furthermore, we highlight problems in using invasion speed as a proxy for potential range shifting abilities under climate change.