University of Oulu

Doorenweerd, C., Lee, K.M., van Nieukerken, E.J. & Mutanen, M. (2023) Phylogenomic inference of two widespread European leaf miner species complexes suggests mechanisms for sympatric speciation (Lepidoptera: Nepticulidae: Ectoedemia). Systematic Entomology, 48(2), 341–353. Available from:

Phylogenomic inference of two widespread European leaf miner species complexes suggests mechanisms for sympatric speciation (Lepidoptera: Nepticulidae: Ectoedemia)

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Author: Doorenweerd, Camiel1,2; Lee, Kyung Min3,4; van Nieukerken, Erik J.1;
Organizations: 1Naturalis Biodiversity Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
2Department of Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences, Entomology Section, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
3Ecology and Genetics Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
4Finnish Museum of Natural History, Zoology Unit, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: John Wiley & Sons, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-08-28


Leafmining insects have extraordinarily intimate relationships with their host plants and are therefore prime candidates for potential ecological speciation in sympatry, but how commonly this mode of speciation occurs in any group of life remains debated. Prior research on the pygmy moth (Nepticulidae) genus Ectoedemia using morphology, DNA barcoding, and multi-marker phylogenetic approaches left two unresolved species complexes, each with each four described species. In this study, we thoroughly sampled each complex across a range of host plants and localities across Europe. We used a double digest restriction-site associated DNA (ddRAD) sequencing approach to clarify species boundaries. In the E. rubivora complex, ddRAD data resolved all four species, contrary to morphological and COI data, which supports a potential scenario of host plant-driven speciation where the host plant specialization provides an ecological barrier to hybridization. However, we found no indication of host race formation within the oligophagous E. atricollis (Stainton). In the E. subbimaculella complex, SNP data only partly distinguishes between the parapatric E. subbimaculella (Haworth) and E. heringi (Toll), but with some statistical overlap, suggesting incomplete lineage sorting which may represent early phases of host-based ecological speciation, or admixture following a period of isolation.

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Series: Systematic entomology
ISSN: 0307-6970
ISSN-E: 1365-3113
ISSN-L: 0307-6970
Volume: 48
Issue: 2
Pages: 341 - 353
DOI: 10.1111/syen.12579
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
Funding: Academy of Finland, Grant/Award Number: 277984
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 277984
Detailed Information: 277984 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2022 The Authors. Systematic Entomology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Royal Entomological Society. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium,provided the original work is properly cited.