TCBES Research Seminar Series Presentation - Event Details

This event has concluded and is no longer current.

This event is being held online. The seminar will be held in-person in Wentworth 1 and streamed online via Zoom. Meeting ID: 965 4702 3084 Passcode: TCBES

TCBES Research Seminar Series Presentation

Location: UH Hilo, Wentworth building, Room 1

University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science Graduate Program Research Seminar Series presents, "Coevolution and macroevolution of leafflower trees (Phyllanthaceae: Glochidion) and leafflower moths (Lepidoptera: Epicephala) in Southeastern Polynesia and the Pacific" with Dr. David Hembry, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, University of Texas Permian Basin on Monday, December 4th at 4 PM. The seminar will be held in-person in Wentworth 1 and streamed online via Zoom. All are welcome!

hawaii.zoom.us/j/96547023084

Meeting ID: 965 4702 3084
Passcode: TCBES

Abstract: Understanding the role of biotic interactions in the generation and maintenance of biological diversity is a central goal of both evolutionary ecology and macroevolution. Brood pollination mutualisms—such as those between figs and fig wasps, or yuccas and yucca moths, in which specialized insects pollinate host plants’ flowers as adults, but consume floral tissue of the same plants as larvae—have evolved only a few times in the entire coevolutionary history of insects and angiosperms. However, these interactions offer numerous opportunities to ask questions about the evolution of mutualistic and parasitic interactions. Here, I present research on the macroevolutionary history of the association between leafflower plants (Phyllanthaceae: Glochidion) and their brood pollinating leafflower moths (Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae: Epicephala). Glochidion is a genus of approximately 300 species of tropical trees, distributed from tropical Asia and Australia through the Pacific islands as far as Southeastern Polynesia (Cook Islands, French Polynesia, and the Pitcairn Islands). Specifically, I focus on the endemic radiation of Glochidion on oceanic islands in French Polynesia and the Cook Islands to show that despite extremely high species-specificity, these brood pollination interactions can be highly dynamic and labile over macroevolutionary timescales. I then examine the ways we can use species interaction network approaches to complement our understanding of these macroevolutionary dynamics in both oceanic island and continental leafflower-leafflower moth communities.

For more information, contact: canale@hawaii.edu (808) 932-7571

Tags: TCBES Biology Polynesia moths

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