Unidirectional Spread of Secondary Sexual Plumage Traits Across an Avian Hybrid Zone

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Science  11 Jun 1993:
Vol. 260, Issue 5114, pp. 1643-1646
DOI: 10.1126/science.260.5114.1643


Theory predicts that traits under positive selection can rapidly cross a hybrid zone in spite of a substantial barrier to neutral gene flow between hybridizing taxa. An avian hybrid zone between Manacus candei (white-collared manakin) and M. vitellinus (golden-collared manakin) is reported here that displays an unusual pattern of noncoincident clines. Male secondary sexual traits of M. vitellinus have spread into populations that are genetically and morphometrically like M. candei. These birds have a lek breeding system in which male mating success is highly skewed, suggesting that sexual selection is driving male sexual traits across the zone.

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