Submitted to: Ecological Society of America Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 2005
Publication Date: July 1, 2005
Citation: Brunet, J. 2005. The impact of ecological factors on outcrossing rate in the blue columbine, Aquilegia coerulea (Ranunculaceae)[abstract]. Ecological Society of America Abstracts. Paper No. 78-7. Technical Abstract: We examined the influence of different ecological factors on outcrossing rate in populations of A. coerulea. Population size, distance between plants, number of flowers per plant, spatial distance between anther and stigma, abundance of bumblebees and hawkmoths, and outcrossing rate all varied among populations of this species. Pollinator abundance also varied over time within one population. We first tested the predictions expected between each ecological variable and outcrossing rate separately. We then compared models with different number of factors, contrasting their adjusted rsquare values and their Akaike information criteria (AIC) to identify the model that best explained the variation in outcrossing rate in A. coerulea. Hawkmoth abundance and total flowers per plant explained 87.6 % of the variation in outcrossing rate in this species and had one of the lowest AIC. Because hawkmoth behavior and floral display both influence the level of geitonogamy, the maintenance of mixed mating systems in populations of A. coerulea requires little adaptive explanation.