Tension zones are maintained by the interaction between selection against hybrids and dispersal of individuals. Investigating multiple hybrid zones within a single species provides the opportunity to examine differences in zone structure on a background of differences in extrinsic factors (e.g., age of the zone, ecology) or intrinsic factors (e.g., chromosomes). The New Zealand tree weta Hemideina thoracica comprises at least eight distinct chromosomal races with diploid numbers ranging from 2n = 11 (XO) to 2n = 23 (XO). Five independent hybrid zones were located that involve races differing from one another by a variety of chromosomal rearrangements. The predicted negative correlation between extent of karyotypic differentiation (measured in terms of both percent of genome and number of rearrangements) and zone width was not found. Conversely, the widest zones were those characterized by two chromosome rearrangements involving up to 35% of the genome. The narrowest zone occurred where the two races differ by a single chromosome rearrangement involving approximately 2% of the genome. The five estimates of chromosomal cline width ranged from 0.5 km to 47 km. A comparative investigation of cline width for both chromosomal and mitochondrial markers revealed a complex pattern of zone characteristics. Three of the five zones in this study showed cline concordance for the nuclear and cytoplasmic markers, and at two of the zones the clines were also coincident. Zones with the widest chromosomal clines had the widest mitochondrial DNA clines. It appears that, even within a single species, the extent of karyotypic differentiation between pairs of races is not a good predictor of the level of disadvantage suffered by hybrids.
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Vol. 57 • No. 4