Meeting Abstract

116.4  Saturday, Jan. 7  The evolution of thermal physiology in the lizard genus Anolis. GUNDERSON, A.R.; Duke University

Greater Antillean Anolis lizards are a classic example of an adaptive radiation, in which rapid speciation was accompanied by adaptive phenotypic divergence. Forty years ago, Ernest Williams hypothesized that the Anolis radiation occurred along two primary ecological axes: structural habitat (i.e., perch selection) and climate. The importance of the structural niche axis has been extensively evaluated and corroborated. However, the degree to which thermal physiology has diverged in response to the occupation of different thermal niches, and thus the possible contribution of thermal physiology to the radiation of this clade, is still relatively unexplored. I evaluate this hypothesis in Puerto Rican anoles by correlating aspects of the thermal sensitivity of locomotor performance with features of their thermal habitat.