• dispersal;
  • gene flow;
  • life history traits;
  • organelle inheritance;
  • species assignment


Success of species assignment using DNA barcodes has been shown to vary among plant lineages because of a wide range of different factors. In this study, we confirm the theoretical prediction that gene flow influences species assignment with simulations and a literature survey. We show that the genome experiencing the highest gene flow is, in the majority of the cases, the best suited for species delimitation. Our results clearly suggest that, for most angiosperm groups, plastid markers will not be the most appropriate for use as DNA barcodes. We therefore advocate shifting the focus from plastid to nuclear markers to achieve an overall higher success using DNA barcodes.