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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-11630

Stökl, J; Schlüter, P M; Stuessy, T F; Paulus, H F; Assum, G; Ayasse, M (2008). Scent variation and hybridization cause the displacement of a sexually deceptive orchid species. American Journal of Botany, 95(4):472-481.

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In the sexually deceptive orchid genus Ophrys, reproductive isolation is based on the specific attraction of males of a single pollinator species, mostly bees, by mimicking the female sex pheromone of this species. Changes in the floral odor can lead to hybridization, introgression, and possibly speciation. We investigated hybrid swarms of O. lupercalis and O. iricolor on Sardinia using behavioral, electrophysiological (GC-EAD), chemical, morphological, and genetic methods (AFLPs). In behavioral experiments, approximately 20% of the flowers from both species and hybrids were attractive to the "wrong" or both pollinator species. Analysis of the EAD-active hydrocarbons in the floral odor showed an overlap in the two species, whereby hybrid individuals could not be separated from O. iricolor. The genetic analysis confirmed the hybridization of the species. Plants of O. iricolor and hybrids are genetically indistinguishable and form an O. iricolor x lupercalis hybrid population. Remaining plants of O. lupercalis will possibly be displaced by the O. iricolor x lupercalis hybrid population in the future. Our study showed that in deceptive orchids, variation in the pollinator attracting cues, in this case, scent, can be the first step for speciation and at the same time cause the displacement of a species.


38 citations in Web of Science®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Systematic Botany and Botanical Gardens
07 Faculty of Science > Department of Plant and Microbial Biology
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Date:April 2008
Deposited On:26 Jan 2009 20:59
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:54
Publisher:Botanical Society of America
Publisher DOI:10.3732/ajb.95.4.472
Official URL:http://www.amjbot.org/cgi/content/full/95/4/472
Related URLs:http://www.amjbot.org (Publisher)

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