Evol Ecol Res 11: 817-825 (2009)     Full PDF if your library subscribes.

Non-adaptive strategies explain variation in rate of development under different thermal conditions

Guillermo Folguera, Tamara P. Catalán and Francisco Bozinovic

Center for Advanced Studies in Ecology and Biodiversity (CASEB), LINC-Global and Departamento de Ecología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, P. Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile

Correspondence: F. Bozinovic, Departamento de Ecología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, P. Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 6513677, Chile.
e-mail: fbozinovic@bio.puc.cl


Objective: To test for an effect of isomorphy on development rate under different experimental thermal environments.

Methods: In three different thermal environments, we studied the following characters as response variables during development: metabolic rate, body mass, and body length. We used as our study model the terrestrial isopod Armadillidium vulgare during the first 14 weeks of development.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that although metabolic rate and body mass may depend on the internal state of individuals, body length may present an isomorphic response. This would be evidence that a non-adaptive interpretation could explain developmental patterns and thus highlight the importance of avoiding the frequent use of unsupported adaptive explanations in evolutionary ecology.

Keywords: adaptation, Armadillidium vulgare, development, isomorphy.

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