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Rosy-finches (1 Viewer)

Could somebody with access please summarise the conclusions - I can't even see the content of the abstract.

Thanks, Richard
 
Sorry, I don't have time to read the paper until after work, but here's the abstract:

DNA sequence data often appear to contradict low-level avian taxonomy, which is usually based on patterns of external phenotypic similarity. We examined such an apparent contradiction in the Nearctic rosy-finches. On the basis of several phenotypic characters the finches were divided into three species congeneric with three Asian species. When Nearctic taxa were analyzed in a principal components analysis, 66.9% of phenotypic variation was explained by differences between the Bering Sea and continental populations, sexual dimorphism and a latitudinal cline. Our phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial ND2 sequences revealed four clades among six species of rosy-finches. Three clades corresponded to three Asian species. The fourth clade included all three Nearctic species. Their haplotypes were not reciprocally monophyletic and the combined genetic variability of all Nearctic taxa was lower than in two of their Asian congeners. A Z-specific intron (ACO1I9) and an autosomal coding locus (MC1R) provided little additional phylogenetic information, most likely because of the longer coalescence times relative to ND2. Phylogeographic analyses of ND2 data revealed significant gene flow among neighboring localities regardless of their taxonomic assignment. Our analyses showed that DNA and phenotypic data are not in conflict, but rather complement each other, and together help clarify species limits. Our data are consistent with a single species in North America, not three.
 
The main conclusion by Drovetski, Zink & Mode is that the three Nearctic species of rosy finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis, atrata & australis) should be treated as a single species (L tephrocotis), with the Bering Sea populations (griseonucha group) being the most divergent.

But an interesting secondary observation by the authors is that Nearctic and Palearctic Pine Grosbeaks (Pinicola enucleator) are more divergent than L arctoa & tephrocotis, and may represent two divergent species.

Richard
 
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But an interesting secondary observation by the authors is that Nearctic and Palearctic Pine Grosbeaks (Pinicola enucleator) are more divergent than [...]

...Same suggestion from COI barcode data (data from http://www.barcodinglife.org/)...
(Including clear independent clustering of all Eurasian birds [Sweden to Kamchatka] and all American birds [Yukon to Newfoundland]. No Alaskan birds, though. The distance between the two groups is around 4%.)

L -
 

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(Including clear independent clustering of all Eurasian birds [Sweden to Kamchatka] and all American birds [Yukon to Newfoundland]. No Alaskan birds, though. The distance between the two groups is around 4%.)

The American birds are apparently only those from the northern part of the range with call types 1, 2 and 3 defined by Adkisson 1981 : http://elibrary.unm.edu/sora/Condor/files/issues/v083n04/p0277-p0288.pdf .
I suppose that birds from Alaska and Yukon are the same (alascensis).

It could be interesting to see how samples from the birds with call types 4 to 7 fit into the picture.

This reminds me of the crossbill saga somehow ...
 
It could be interesting to see how samples from the birds with call types 4 to 7 fit into the picture.

Partial answer, based on the cytochrome b, in attachment.
(American bird sequences from Topp & Winker [2008 - http://www.uaf.edu/museum/bird/personnel/KWinker/Topp and Winker QCI birds Auk 2008.pdf]. 'SC_AK' = southcentral Alaska; 'SE_AK' = southeastern Alaska; 'WA' = Washington state; 'BC' = British Columbia. P. e. carlottae from Queen Charlotte Islands should be Adkisson's type 4; Alaskan birds possibly type 3 [Adkisson's type 3 were from Fairbanks, which is arguably further north; but if we contend that Yukon birds are from the range of call types 1-2-3...]; for Washington state birds, it's harder to say. The Russian sample is from Arnaiz-Villena et al. [2001 - http://chopo.pntic.mec.es/~biolmol/publicaciones/crossbills.pdf].)

This reminds me of the crossbill saga somehow ...

The call type thing, yes... But, in crossbills, genetics are much, much less clear ;)
 

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The call type thing, yes... But, in crossbills, genetics are much, much less clear ;)

Sure, especially when you see the number of vocal types recorded by Förschler & Kalko in Southwestern Europe only:

Vocal type A—‘‘Wandering Crossbill’’

Vocal type C—‘‘Glip Crossbill’’

Vocal type D—‘‘Phantom Crossbill’’

Vocal type E—‘‘British Crossbill’’

Vocal type F—‘‘Scarce Crossbill’’

Vocal type X—‘‘Parakeet Crossbill’’

Vocal type B—‘‘Bohemian Crossbill’’

Vocal type G—‘‘Pyrenean Crossbill’’

Vocal type H—‘‘Corsican Crossbill’’

Vocal type I—‘‘Javalambre I Crossbill’’

Vocal type J—‘‘Javalambre II Crossbill’’

Vocal type K—‘‘Cazorla Crossbill’’

Vocal type L—‘‘Cevennes Crossbill’’

Marc I. Förschler & Elisabeth K. V. Kalko
Vocal types in crossbill populations (Loxia spp.) of Southwest
Europe
J Ornithol (2009) 150:17–27

http://www.springerlink.com/content/443l5272x5616125/
 
Just to update this further, I have recently heard about research from Dave McDonald here at University of Wyoming which also confirms that NA Rosy-finches should be lumped into 1 species. Although I suppose based on divergence that perhaps you could argue that the Bering Sea Island forms maybe should be recognized (big maybe).
 
Just to update this further, I have recently heard about research from Dave McDonald here at University of Wyoming which also confirms that NA Rosy-finches should be lumped into 1 species. Although I suppose based on divergence that perhaps you could argue that the Bering Sea Island forms maybe should be recognized (big maybe).

Based on what?
 
Mostly for the reasons listed in the abstract at the top of this thread; in general the different "morphotypes" don't correspond genetically to each other; i.e. there is no indication that the brown-capped forms are a monophyletic group when compared to the Black and Gray-crowned forms.
 
Drovetski et al 2009

There's a new study on rosy-finches in Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution "Patchy distributions belie morphological and genetic homogeneity in rosy-finches".
It can be found here: http://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...=6438623&md5=1cfe28fc04951ac813f6194c03281dcb
NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification today...
Rosy-Finches: 1 or 3 species breeding in North America?

Will the AOU lump the three North American breeding species of Rosy-Finches (Gray-crowned, Black, and Brown-capped)? Here is the Abstract from a fairly recent Molecular publication. Note the last sentence of the Abstract which states, "Our data are consistent with a single species in North America, not three."

ABSTRACT: "DNA sequence data often appear to contradict low-level avian taxonomy, which is usually based on patterns of external phenotypic similarity. We examined such an apparent contradiction in the Nearctic rosy-finches. On the basis of several phenotypic characters the finches were divided into three species congeneric with three Asian species. When Nearctic taxa were analyzed in a principal components analysis, 66.9% of phenotypic variation was explained by differences between the Bering Sea and continental populations, sexual dimorphism and a latitudinal cline. Our phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial ND2 sequences revealed four clades among six species of rosy-finches. Three clades corresponded to three Asian species. The fourth clade included all three Nearctic species. Their haplotypes were not reciprocally monophyletic and the combined genetic variability of all Nearctic taxa was lower than in two of their Asian congeners. A Z-specific intron (ACO1I9) and an autosomal coding locus (MC1R) provided little additional phylogenetic information, most likely because of the longer coalescence times relative to ND2. Phylogeographic analyses of ND2 data revealed significant gene flow among neighboring localities regardless of their taxonomic assignment. Our analyses showed that DNA and phenotypic data are not in conflict, but rather complement each other, and together help clarify species limits. Our data are consistent with a single species in North America, not three."

If the three North American Rosy-Finches are merged , the AOU Check-list (1998) states that the appropriate English and scientific names would be American Rosy-Finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis) distinct from the Asian Rosy-Finch (L. arctoa). The latter Asian species was just added to the ABA Checklist in the ABA's Checklist Committee's 23rd report published in the November 2012 issue of Birding magazine 44(6): 28-33.

Citation: Sergei V. Drovetskia, Robert M. Zinkb, Nicolle A. Modec. 2009.
Patchy distributions belie morphological and genetic homogeneity in rosy-finches. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 50 (3): 437-445.

Ron Pittaway
Toronto, Ontario
Hi -

I recently sent a private message to a birding friend about discussions of lumping redpolls, based on relatively small genetic distances. I think the same issue is involved here.

DNA sequence data as described here are useful for estimating the length of time taxa have diverged in genetic isolation from each other. Substantial differences, particularly where multiple examples of each taxon are sequenced, provide evidence of extended independent evolutionary histories, which strengthens arguments for treatment as separate species.

However, not all speciation takes place through the gradual accumulation of small genetic differences during long periods of allopatry. This perhaps is the most common route to speciation in birds (debatable) but clearly is not the exclusive route. In other organisms speciation has been documented as occurring in response to strong bidirectional (disruptive) selection, and also through macrogenetic changes such as chromosomal re-arrangements (e.g. in the group of ground squirrels formerly called Townsend's). In such cases it is very possible for taxa to behave as "good" species long before the supposedly neutral parts of the genome show substantial differentiation.

It was reported recently (and discussed on this forum) that a chromosomal polymorphism is associated with the phenotypic differentiation in North American Junco taxa. I do not have a strong opinion on whether there should be more species of Junco recognized, but this research suggests that mechanisms for rapid speciation might be operative in some bird taxa.

I have a short list of North American bird taxa for which at least circumstantial evidence exists for rapid differentiation to the level of potential or documented reproductive isolation. This includes white-cheeked Branta, where "minima" has been known for the better part of a century to nest quite close to the nesting range of other white-cheeked geese now included within "hutchinsii," without interbreeding. The Branta bernicla also seems to show reproductive isolation out of proportion to its genetic differentiation. Also consider Loxia, Coccothraustes, and Tympanuchus. I am sure some of you can come up with others.

For some of these e know or can hypothesize some of the elements of the "special circumstances" that allow rapid phenotypic and behavioral differentiation. In Loxia, the combination of flocking behavior mediated by (learned?) contact calls, strong selection for morphological adaptation to different cone characteristics, seems to be at least part of the picture. In Branta, the combination of migration in family groups organized into flocks of close relatives, and pair formation in wintering areas within these flocks are probably important. And for White-cheeked Branta, the additional propensity for rapid morphological evolution, apparently in response to climatic and food-quality differences likely plays a significant role.

My views on this subject have been greatly influenced by my interest and study, over the past 14 years, in salmon biology, where selection can produce incredibly rapid responses in genetically based life history traits, as well as morphology, including rapid evolution of substantial levels of sympatric reproductive isolation. Salmon taxonomists prefer not to recognize these differentiated populations formally because that would complicate management, but the genetics lesson is clear.

So in summary, lack of gene flow, at least in moderately conservative portions of the genome, can be very useful in recognizing cryptic species, or species that remain moderately similar in morphology, but comparatively "recent" gene flow in these same portions of the genome should not necessarily preclude species recognition.

Wayne Hoffman
 
Asian Rosy Finch

Buchheim & Dubois 2014. Sushkin's Asian Rosy Finch Leucosticte arctoa sushkini, a little-known taxon from Mongolia. BirdingASIA 22: 67–73.
... It would be very interesting to conduct further studies on all forms of Asian Rosy Finch, since they are phenotypically rather different and their respective breeding ranges are not known to overlap. However, it seems possible that arctoa does come into contact with cognata, and that the latter's range may overlap with that of gigliolii. Further, it may transpire that some taxa would be better elevated to species. Sushkini is certainly one of them, and not only because it apparently shows the most pronounced plumage dimorphism (leaving aside our limited knowledge of cognata). Feather samples for molecular genetic analysis will be collected in due course.
Clement & Arkhipov 2010 (HBW 15).
 
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The main conclusion by Drovetski, Zink & Mode is that the three Nearctic species of rosy finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis, atrata & australis) should be treated as a single species (L tephrocotis), with the Bering Sea populations (griseonucha group) being the most divergent.

But an interesting secondary observation by the authors is that Nearctic and Palearctic Pine Grosbeaks (Pinicola enucleator) are more divergent than L arctoa & tephrocotis, and may represent two divergent species.

Richard
...Same suggestion from COI barcode data (data from Bold Systems v4)...
(Including clear independent clustering of all Eurasian birds [Sweden to Kamchatka] and all American birds [Yukon to Newfoundland]. No Alaskan birds, though. The distance between the two groups is around 4%.)

L -
Is there a paper about that?
 
Is there a paper about that?
McLaughlin JF, Faircloth BC, Glenn TC, Winker K. Divergence, gene flow and speciation in eight lineages of trans-Beringian birds. Mol Ecol. 2020; 29: 3526–3542. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.15574

This paper has some enucleator data in it, including Alaskan samples. They find there's quite a bit of differentiation, but still some ongoing gene-flow across the Bering Sea. It probably needs a paper dedicated to just this species, including all samples from across the range to get a more thorough understanding.
 
Is there a paper about that?
This may be of interest, Jim.
Drovetski, SV, R Zink, PGP Ericson and I Fadeev. 2010. A multilocus study of pine grosbeak phylogeography supports the pattern of greater intercontinental divergence in Holarctic boreal forest birds than in birds inhabiting other high-latitude habitats. J. Biogeogr. 37: 696–706.
MJB
 

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This may be of interest, Jim.
Drovetski, SV, R Zink, PGP Ericson and I Fadeev. 2010. A multilocus study of pine grosbeak phylogeography supports the pattern of greater intercontinental divergence in Holarctic boreal forest birds than in birds inhabiting other high-latitude habitats. J. Biogeogr. 37: 696–706.
MJB
Merci. BOW says this "Recent work suggests that three or more Holarctic species may be involved here". I wonder if there are any arguments in favour of at least two species.
 

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