This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Phylogeographic studies of Philippine birds support that deep genetic structure occurs across continuous lowland forests within islands, despite the lack of obvious contemporary isolation mechanisms. To examine the pattern and tempo of diversification within Philippine island forests, and test if common mechanisms are responsible for observed differentiation, we focused on three co-distributed lowland bird taxa endemic to Greater Luzon and Greater Negros-Panay: Blue-headed Fantail (Rhipidura cyaniceps), White-browed Shama (Copsychus luzoniensis), and Lemon-throated Leaf-Warbler (Phylloscopus cebuensis). Each species has two described subspecies within Greater Luzon, and a single described subspecies on Greater Negros/Panay. Each of the three focal species showed a common geographic pattern of two monophyletic groups in Greater Luzon sister to a third monophyletic group found in Greater Negros-Panay, suggesting that common or similar biogeographic processes may have produced similar distributions. However, studied species displayed variable levels of mitochondrial DNA differentiation between clades, and genetic differentiation within Luzon was not necessarily concordant with described subspecies boundaries. Population genetic parameters for the three species suggested both rapid population growth from small numbers and geographic expansion across Luzon Island. Estimates of the timing of population expansion further supported that these events occurred asynchronously throughout the Pleistocene in the focal species, demanding particular explanations for differentiation, and support that co-distribution may be secondarily congruent.
Sánchez-González, Luis Antonio, Peter A. Hosner, and Robert G. Moyle. "Genetic Differentiation in Insular Lowland Rainforests: Insights from Historical Demographic Patterns in Philippine Birds." PLOS ONE PLoS ONE 10.8 (2015): n. pag. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0134284.
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