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Phylogenetic Cascades and the Origins of Tropical Diversity
- Forister, Matthew L., Feldman, Chris R.
- Biotropica 2011 v.43 no.3 pp. 270-278
- hosts, insect larvae, models, parasitoids, phylogeny, phytophagous insects
- For organisms involved in specialized ecological interactions, the potential exists to have congruent evolutionary histories, such that diversification within one lineage of organisms parallels diversification within another. This model of shared evolutionary history has most often been explored in a bitrophic context, particularly with plants and specialized herbivorous insects, though also with other ecological partners such as vertebrate hosts and their invertebrate parasites. Recently, the possibility has been raised that evolutionary histories might be shared across more than two trophic levels, a phenomenon that we term a phylogenetic cascade. We review previous work on tritrophic diversification and discuss outstanding questions, with an emphasis on plants, caterpillars, and parasitoids, in diverse tropical communities.