Biodiversity Science ›› 2019, Vol. 27 ›› Issue (7): 772-777.doi: 10.17520/biods.2019067

• Original Papers • Previous Article     Next Article

Phenotypic selection analysis of flower traits in Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens (Ranunculaceae)

Lu Ningna1, 2, *(), Liu Zhenheng3, Ma Yan2, Lu Guangmei2, Meng Xiuxiang1, *()   

  1. 1 School of Environment & Natural Resources, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872
    2 School of Life Sciences, Northwest Normal University, Lanzhou 730000
    3 Grassland Station, Maqu, Gannan Prefecture, Gansu 747300
  • Received:2019-03-08 Accepted:2019-06-20 Online:2019-08-21
  • Lu Ningna,Meng Xiuxiang E-mail:moonlnn@126.com;meng2014@ruc.edu.cn

It has been widely accepted that pollinator-mediated selection is responsible for the evolution of flower traits. To date, two distinct methods of phenotypic manipulation and phenotypic selection analyses have been used to demonstrate flower function and potential selection. However, empirical studies combining both methods are rare in wild plants. Through manipulating sepal size of Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens (Ranunculaceae) and performing phenotypic selection analysis, this study examined functions of two flower traits and the potential selection on them. Sepals manipulated to be smaller significantly decreased visitation rate of pollinators, but did not affect seed number per flower or seed set. Sepal size mainly affected pollen export mediated by pollinator attraction rather seed production. Phenotypic selection estimated through female fitness showed no significant gradient with varying sepal width and length. However, significant linear selection differential and selection gradient on the spur length were observed, showing higher seed production in individuals with longer floral spurs. This study suggests different function and potential fitness consequences of floral traits that were subject to natural selection.

Key words: Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens, phenotypic selection, phenotype evolution, fitness, flower size, trait manipulation

Table 1

Pearson’s correlation coefficients among the floral traits of Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens. n = 50; *** P < 0.001."

萼片长 Sepal length (mm) 萼片宽 Sepal width (mm) 花距长 Spur length (mm)
花高 Flower height (cm) 0.192 0.128 -0.035
萼片长 Sepal length (mm) 0.715*** 0.569***
萼片宽 Sepal width (mm) 0.483***

Table 2

Loadings of floral traits of Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens on the first three components (PCs) produced by a principle components analysis with a varimax rotation."

载荷 Loading
PC1 PC2 PC3
萼片长Sepal length 0.818 0.388 0.152
萼片宽Sepal width 0.936 0.171 0.031
花距长Spur length 0.309 0.944 -0.044
花高Flower height 0.091 -0.027 0.994
解释方差
Percentage variance explained (%)
41.22% 26.77% 25.35%

Fig. 1

Effect of flower manipulation of Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens on visitation frequency of insects (Bar means SE)"

Table 3

Phenotypic selection on floral traits and the first three components (PCs) of Delphinium kamaonense var. glabrescens through female fitness. N = 50; ** P < 0.01; * P < 0.05; ? P < 0.1."

线性选择差
Linear selection differential (Mean ± SE)
线性选择梯度
Linear selection gradient (Mean ± SE)
花特征 Floral traits 萼片长 Sepal length 0.284 ± 0.058? -0.017 ± 0.071
萼片宽 Sepal width 0.286 ± 0.072? 0.024 ± 0.068
花距长 Spur length 0.438 ± 0.055** 0.143 ± 0.059*
花高 Flower height 0.184 ± 0.064 0.065 ± 0.05
花特征主成分
Floral trait components (PCs)
PC1 0.159 ± 0.051 0.058 ± 0.047
PC2 0.242 ± 0.065 0.131 ± 0.047**
PC3 0.174 ± 0.064 0.057 ± 0.049
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