Deeply divergent mitochondrial lineages reveal patterns of local endemism in chironomids of the Australian Wet Tropics

Krosch, Matt, Baker, Andrew, McKie, Brendan, Mather, Peter, & Cranston, Peter (2009) Deeply divergent mitochondrial lineages reveal patterns of local endemism in chironomids of the Australian Wet Tropics. Austral Ecology : a journal of ecology in the Southern Hemisphere, 34(3), pp. 317-328.

View at publisher


The Wet Tropics bioregion of north-eastern Australia has been subject to extensive fluctuations in climate throughout the late Pliocene and Pleistocene. Cycles of rainforest contraction and expansion of dry sclerophyll forest associated with such climatic fluctuations are postulated to have played a major role in driving geographical endemism in terrestrial rainforest taxa. Consequences for the distributions of aquatic organisms, however, are poorly understood.The Australian non-biting midge species Echinocladius martini Cranston (Diptera: Chironomidae), although restricted to cool, well-forested freshwater streams, has been considered to be able to disperse among populations located in isolated rainforest pockets during periods of sclerophyllous forest expansion, potentially limiting the effect of climatic fluctuations on patterns of endemism. In this study, mitochondrial COI and 16S data were analysed for E. martini collected from eight sites spanning theWet Tropics bioregion to assess the scale and extent of phylogeographic structure. Analyses of genetic structure showed several highly divergent cryptic lineages with restricted geographical distributions. Within one of the identified lineages, strong genetic structure implied that dispersal among proximate (<1 km apart) streams was extremely restricted. The results suggest that vicariant processes, most likely due to the systemic drying of the Australian continent during the Plio-Pleistocene, might have fragmented historical E. martini populations and, hence, promoted divergence in allopatry.

Impact and interest:

20 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™
21 citations in Web of Science®

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 29633
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Chironomidae, cryptic diversity, Echinocladius martini, Pleistocene, vicariance
DOI: 10.1111/j.1442-9993.2009.01932.x
ISSN: 1442-9985
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY (060300) > Biogeography and Phylogeography (060302)
Divisions: Past > Schools > Biogeoscience
Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 Wiley Blackwell
Deposited On: 14 Jan 2010 04:16
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2014 02:33

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page