Shared phylogeographic patterns between the ectocommensal flatworm Temnosewellia albata and its host, the endangered freshwater crayfish Euastacus robertsi
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Comparative phylogeography of commensal species may show congruent patterns where the species involved share a common history. Temnosewellia is a genus of flatworms, members of which live in commensal relationships with host freshwater crustaceans. By constructing phylogenetic trees based on mitochondrial COI and 28S nuclear ribosomal gene sequences, this study investigated how evolutionary history has shaped patterns of intraspecific molecular variation in two such freshwater commensals. This study concentrates on the flatworm Temnosewellia albata and its critically endangered crayfish host Euastacus robertsi, which have a narrow climatically-restricted distribution on three mountaintops. The genetic data expands upon previous studies of Euastacus that suggested several vicariance events have led to the population subdivision of Euastacus robertsi. Further, our study compared historical phylogeographic patterning of these species. Our results showed that phylogeographic patterns shared among these commensals were largely congruent, featuring a shared history of limited dispersal between the mountaintops. Several hypotheses were proposed to explain the phylogeographic points of differences between the species. This study contributes significantly to understanding evolutionary relationships of commensal freshwater taxa.
© The Author(s) 2014. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Biogeography and Phylogeography