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Integrative Approaches to Evolutionary Ecology: Anolis Lizards as Model Systems

Two approaches characterize the study of evolutionary ecology. Prospective studies investigate how present-day ecological processes may lead to evolu­ tionary change; retrospective studies ask how present-day ecological condi­ tions can be understood as the outcome of historical events. I argue that the most appropriate test of an evolutionary ecological hypothesis requires an integration of these approaches. I illustrate this approach by examining the hypothesis that interspecific competition has been the driving force behind the evolutionary radiation of Anolis lizards in the Caribbean. This hypothesis is supported by four lines of evidence: 1. Anole communities are structured by competition; 2. Populations alter resource use in the presence of congeners; 3. Microevolutionary adaptation occurs in response to resource shifts; and 4. Macroevolutionary patterns are consistent with interspecific competition as the driving force behind anole adaptive radiation. INTRODUCTION A schism exists in the field of evolutionary ecology. To some, evolutionary ecology is prospective, inquiring how present-day ecological processes may lead to evolutionary change, whereas for others, the emphasis is retrospective, asking how present-day ecological conditions can be understood as the out467 0066-4162/94/1120-0467$05.00 LOSOS come of h:istorical events. This dichotomy can be seen by comparing Pianka's more evolutionary (89) ecologically oriented Evolutionary http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics Annual Reviews
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