Environmental Heterogeneity: Temporal and Spatial

Abstract

Environments experienced by living organisms can be heterogeneous in a variety of ways. Variation in time and in space have distinct consequences for the fitness of plants and animals, and elicit different types of evolutionary responses through natural selection.

Keywords: phenotypic plasticity; genetic polymorphism; habitat selection; genetic diversity

Figure 1.

The common structure of Dempster's and Levene's models. A random‐mating population is split into two patches, where each genotype (one locus, two alleles) is characterized by a distinct fitness (different between the two patches). A new random‐mating population is then generated and the process starts all over again. The major difference between the two submodels is that Dempster's uses absolute fitness (hard selection), while Levene's uses relative fitness (soft selection) (not shown – see text for discussion).

close

References

Bell G and Lechowicz MJ (1991) The ecology and genetics of fitness in forest plants. I. Environmental heterogeneity measured by explant trials. Journal of Ecology 79: 663–685.

Bradshaw AD (1965) Evolutionary significance of phenotypic plasticity in plants. Advances in Genetics 13: 115–155.

Dempster ER (1955) Maintenance of genetic heterozygosity. Cold Spring Harbor Symposia in Quantitative Biology 20: 25–32.

Fisher RA (1930) The Genetical Theory of Natural Selection. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Levene H (1953) Genetic equilibrium when more than one ecological niche is available. American Naturalist 87: 311–313.

Mitton JB and Grant MC (1984) Associations among protein heterozygosity, growth rate, and developmental homeostasis. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 15: 479–499.

Pigliucci M and Schlichting CD (1997) On the limits of quantitative genetics for the study of phenotypic evolution. Acta Biotheoretica 45: 143–160.

Stratton DA (1995) Spatial scale of variation in fitness of Erigeron annuus. American Naturalist 146: 608–624.

Sultan SE (1987) Evolutionary implications of phenotypic plasticity in plants. Evolutionary Biology 21: 127–178.

Turesson G (1922) The genotypical response of the plant species to the habitat. Hereditas 3: 211–350.

van Tienderen PH (1997) Generalists, specialists, and the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in sympatric populations of distinct species. Evolution 51: 1372–1380.

Whiteman HH (1994) Evolution of facultative paedomorphosis in salamanders. Quarterly Review of Biology 69: 205–221.

Wright S (1931) Evolution in mendelian populations. Genetics 16: 97–159.

Further Reading

Bell G (1992) Five properties of environments. In: Grant PR and Horn HS (eds) Molds, Molecules, and Metazoa, pp. 33–56. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Brodie III ED, Moore AJ and Janzen FJ (1995) Visualizing and quantifying natural selection. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 10: 313–318.

Hartl DL and Clark AG (1989) Principles of Population Genetics. Sunderland, MA: Sinauer.

Maynard Smith J (1989) Evolutionary Genetics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ridley M (1996) Evolution. Cambridge, MA: Blackwell.

Schlichting CD (1986) The evolution of phenotypic plasticity in plants. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 17: 667–693.

Schlichting CD and Pigliucci M (1998) Phenotypic Evolution: A Reaction Norm Perspective. Sunderland, MA: Sinauer.

Contact Editor close
Submit a note to the editor about this article by filling in the form below.

* Required Field

How to Cite close
Pigliucci, Massimo(Apr 2001) Environmental Heterogeneity: Temporal and Spatial. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1038/npg.els.0001766]