Diversification and dispersal of the Hawaiian Drosophilidae: The evolution of Scaptomyza

Richard T. Lapoint, Patrick M. O'Grady, Noah K. Whiteman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


The genus Scaptomyza is emerging as a model lineage in which to study biogeography and ecological adaptation. To place future research on these species into an evolutionary framework we present the most comprehensive phylogeny of Scaptomyza to date, based on 5042. bp of DNA sequence data and representatives from 13 of 21 subgenera. We infer strong support for the monophyly of almost all subgenera with exceptions corroborating hypotheses of conflict inferred from previous taxonomic studies. We find evidence that the lineage originated in the Hawaiian Islands and subsequently dispersed to the mainland and other remote oceanic islands. We also identify that many of the unique ecological niches exploited by this lineage (e.g., herbivory, spider predation) arose singly and independently.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-108
Number of pages14
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2013


  • Dispersal
  • Hawaii
  • Hawaiian Drosophilidae
  • Leaf-mining
  • Scaptomyza

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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