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The evolution of imperfect floral mimicry


Vereecken, N J; Schiestl, F P (2008). The evolution of imperfect floral mimicry. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), 105(21):7484-7488.

Abstract

The theory of mimicry predicts that selection favors signal refinement in mimics to optimally match the signals released by their specific model species. We provide here chemical and behavioral evidence that a sexually deceptive orchid benefits from its mimetic imperfection to its co-occurring and specific bee model by triggering a stronger response in male bees, which react more intensively to the similar, but novel, scent stimulus provided by the orchid.

The theory of mimicry predicts that selection favors signal refinement in mimics to optimally match the signals released by their specific model species. We provide here chemical and behavioral evidence that a sexually deceptive orchid benefits from its mimetic imperfection to its co-occurring and specific bee model by triggering a stronger response in male bees, which react more intensively to the similar, but novel, scent stimulus provided by the orchid.

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53 citations in Web of Science®
54 citations in Scopus®
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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
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Uncontrolled Keywords:floral odor, pollination, sex pheromone, signal evolution
Language:English
Date:May 2008
Deposited On:29 Jan 2009 16:55
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:55
Publisher:National Academy of Sciences
ISSN:0027-8424
Additional Information:Copyright: National Academy of Sciences USA
Publisher DOI:10.1073/pnas.0800194105
PubMed ID:18508972
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-11860

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