Among the explanations for minimizing the effects of extraneous variation has been canalization and developmental stability. However, there is little agreement as to whether these two processes reflect a common set of mechanisms. This confusion is inflated due to the lack of consensus as to a precise definition of canalization. In this study, canalization in the sternopleural bristle system is used to investigate the relationships between measures of canalization and developmental stability by comparing how a panel of naturally derived lines responds to both genetic and environmental perturbations. No evidence for a common mechanism between the different measures of canalization was observed. Furthermore, a hypothesis regarding a common mechanism for environmental and genetic canalization was tested, and no evidence was found to support it. However, there is evidence for a relationship between at least one form of canalization and developmental stability.
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Vol. 59 • No. 7