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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Armament Imbalances: Match and Mismatch in Plant-Pollinator Traits of Highly Specialized Long-Spurred Orchids

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More, Marcela [1] ; Amorim, Felipe W. [2] ; Benitez-Vieyra, Santiago [1] ; Martin Medina, A. [1] ; Sazima, Marlies ; Cocucci, Andrea A. [1]
Total Authors: 6
[1] Univ Nacl Cordoba, Consejo Nacl Invest Cient & Tecn, Inst Multidisciplinario Biol Vegetal, Lab Ecol Evolut & Biol Floral, RA-5000 Cordoba - Argentina
[2] Univ Estadual Campinas, Inst Biol, Dept Biol Vegetal, Programa Posgrad Biol Vegetal, Sao Paulo - Brazil
Total Affiliations: 2
Document type: Journal article
Source: PLoS One; v. 7, n. 7 JUL 25 2012.
Web of Science Citations: 22

Background: Some species of long-spurred orchids achieve pollination by a close association with long-tongued hawkmoths. Among them, several Habenaria species present specialized mechanisms, where pollination success depends on the attachment of pollinaria onto the heads of hawkmoths with very long proboscises. However, in the Neotropical region such moths are less abundant than their shorter-tongued relatives and are also prone to population fluctuations. Both factors may give rise to differences in pollinator-mediated selection on floral traits through time and space. Methodology/Principal Findings: We characterized hawkmoth assemblages and estimated phenotypic selection gradients on orchid spur lengths in populations of three South American Habenaria species. We examined the match between hawkmoth proboscis and flower spur lengths to determine whether pollinators may act as selective agents on flower morphology. We found significant directional selection on spur length only in Habenaria gourlieana, where most pollinators had proboscises longer than the mean of orchid spur length. Conclusions/Significance: Phenotypic selection is dependent on the mutual match between pollinator and flower morphologies. However, our findings indicate that pollinator-mediated selection may vary through time and space according to local variations in pollinator assemblages. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 03/12595-7 - Floristic composition, structure and functioning of the Dense Rainforest nuclei of Picinguaba and Santa Virgínia of Parque Estadual da Serra do Mar, State of São Paulo, Brazil
Grantee:Carlos Alfredo Joly
Support type: BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Thematic Grants