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Nat Commun. 2018 May 22;9(1):2018. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-04378-3.

Kin discrimination allows plants to modify investment towards pollinator attraction.

Author information

1
Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, CH-1015, Switzerland. rubentorices@gmail.com.
2
Departamento de Ecología Funcional y Evolución. Estación Experimental de Zonas Áridas, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas. Ctra. de Sacramento s/n, La Cañada de San Urbano, Almería, E-04120, Spain. rubentorices@gmail.com.
3
Departamento de Ecología Funcional y Evolución. Estación Experimental de Zonas Áridas, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas. Ctra. de Sacramento s/n, La Cañada de San Urbano, Almería, E-04120, Spain.
4
Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, CH-1015, Switzerland.

Abstract

Pollinators tend to be preferentially attracted to large floral displays that may comprise more than one plant in a patch. Attracting pollinators thus not only benefits individuals investing in advertising, but also other plants in a patch through a 'magnet' effect. Accordingly, there could be an indirect fitness advantage to greater investment in costly floral displays by plants in kin-structured groups than when in groups of unrelated individuals. Here, we seek evidence for this strategy by manipulating relatedness in groups of the plant Moricandia moricandioides, an insect-pollinated herb that typically grows in patches. As predicted, individuals growing with kin, particularly at high density, produced larger floral displays than those growing with non-kin. Investment in attracting pollinators was thus moulded by the presence and relatedness of neighbours, exemplifying the importance of kin recognition in the evolution of plant reproductive strategies.

PMID:
29789560
PMCID:
PMC5964244
DOI:
10.1038/s41467-018-04378-3
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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