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30 December 2020 Diversity Patterns of Neotropical Ferns: Revisiting Tryon's Centers of Richness and Endemism
Jacob S. Suissa, Michael A. Sundue
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Abstract

Almost fifty years ago Dr. Rolla M. Tryon investigated the patterns of neotropical fern diversity and discovered that sites of exceptional richness and endemism are found in five predominantly montane regions. Here, we revisit these sites with the aid of contemporary methodologies. We integrate phylogenetic, ecological, climatic, and occurrence data to better understand what factors contribute to the patterns of fern diversity throughout the neotropics. With this dataset we are able to reassess Tryon's neotropical hotspots fifty years later and take one step closer to understanding the processes governing the distribution of fern species. We recover six hotspots of neotropical species richness and endemism that closely mirror those delineated by Tryon. Like Tryon, we find that hotspots are found predominantly in montane regions with more climatic space compared to surrounding areas. Patterns of species richness and lineage diversification can largely be explained by the extent of available habitats, especially in association with montane ecosystems. We also show that patterns of species assemblages across the neotropics are largely dictated by distance and elevation. In synthesis, we propose that, in addition to migration and persistence of relictual lineages, patterns of species richness and endemism in the neotropics are driven by in situ speciation in montane regions.

Jacob S. Suissa and Michael A. Sundue "Diversity Patterns of Neotropical Ferns: Revisiting Tryon's Centers of Richness and Endemism," American Fern Journal 110(4), 211-232, (30 December 2020). https://doi.org/10.1640/0002-8444-110.4.211
Published: 30 December 2020
JOURNAL ARTICLE
22 PAGES


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KEYWORDS
biodiversity
diversification
Endemism
ferns
macroevolution
Neotropics
species richness
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