• Cline;
  • hybrid zone;
  • introgression;
  • Manacus;
  • manakin;
  • sexual selection;
  • speciation

Abstract A previous study of the hybrid zone in western Panama between white-collared (Manacus candei) and golden-collared manakins (M. vitellinus) documented the unidirectional introgression of vitellinus male secondary sexual traits across the zone. Here, we examine the hybrid zone in greater genetic and morphological detail. Statistical comparisons of clines are performed using maximum-likelihood and nonparametric bootstrap methods. Our results demonstrate that an array of six molecular and two morphometric markers agree in cline position and width. Clines for male collar and belly color are similar in width to the first eight clines, but are shifted in position by at least five cline widths. The result is that birds in intervening populations are genetically and morphometrically very like parental candei, but males have the plumage color of parental vitellinus. Neither neutral diffusion nor nonlinearity of color scales appear to be viable explanations for the large cline shifts. Genetic dominance of vitellinus plumage traits is another potential explanation that will require breeding experiments to test. Sexual selection remains a plausible explanation for the observed introgression of vitellinus color traits in these highly dimorphic, polygynous, lek-mating birds. Two other clines, including a nondiagnostic isozyme locus, are similar in position to the main cluster of clines, but are broader in width. Thus, introgression at some loci is greater than that detected with diagnostic markers. Assuming that narrow clines are maintained by selection, variation in cline width indicates that selection is not uniform throughout the genome and that diagnostic markers are under more intense selective pressure. The traditional focus on diagnostic markers in studies of hybrid zones may therefore lead to underestimates of average introgression. This effect may be more pronounced in organisms with low levels of genetic divergence between hybridizing taxa.