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Evolutionary Community Ecology$
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Mark A. McPeek

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691088778

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691088778.001.0001

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New Species for the Community

New Species for the Community

Chapter:
(p.137) Chapter Four New Species for the Community
Source:
Evolutionary Community Ecology
Author(s):

Mark A. McPeek

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691088778.003.0004

This chapter considers the main processes that operate at the regional and biogeographic scales to ultimately shape local community structure—namely, speciation and biogeographic mixing of taxa. It first defines what a “species” is before discussing the range of mechanisms that give rise to new species, and more specifically reproductive isolation. In particular, it examines the extent to which the speciation process directly induces differences in ecologically important traits between the progenitor and daughter species. It then explains how the phenotypic differences generated at the time of speciation determine what type of community member the new species begins as. It also shows how past climate change affected current local and regional community structure by periodic forcing of mass movements of species across Earth and causing increases in speciation and extinction rates. Finally, it evaluates the dynamics of invasive species and their role in habitat alteration today.

Keywords:   community structure, speciation, biogeographic mixing, new species, reproductive isolation, trait, climate change, extinction, invasive species, habitat alteration

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