|Phylogenetic diversity as a window into the evolutionary and biogeographic histories of present-day richness gradients for mammals.
|Year of Publication
|Davies JT, Buckley LB
|Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences
|2011 Aug 27
|Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation of Natural Resources, Ecosystem, Genetic Speciation, Mammals, Phylogeny
<p>Phylogenetic diversity (PD) captures the shared ancestry of species, and is increasingly being recognized as a valuable conservation currency. Regionally, PD frequently covaries closely with species richness; however, variation in speciation and extinction rates and/or the biogeographic history of lineages can result in significant deviation. Locally, these differences may be pronounced. Rapid recent speciation or high temporal turnover of lineages can result in low PD but high richness. In contrast, rare dispersal events, for example, between biomes, can elevate PD but have only small impact on richness. To date, environmental predictors of species richness have been well studied but global models explaining variation in PD are lacking. Here, we contrast the global distribution of PD versus species richness for terrestrial mammals. We show that an environmental model of lineage diversification can predict well the discrepancy in the distribution of these two variables in some places, for example, South America and Africa but not others, such as Southeast Asia. When we have information on multiple diversity indices, conservation efforts directed towards maximizing one currency or another (e.g. species richness versus PD) should also consider the underlying processes that have shaped their distributions.</p>
|Philos. Trans. R. Soc. Lond., B, Biol. Sci.