Speciation rates decline through time in individual-based models of speciation and extinction

Shaopeng Wang, Anping Chen, Jingyun Fang, Stephen Wilson Pacala

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A well-documented pattern in the fossil record is a long-term decline in the origination rate of new taxa after diversity rebounds from a mass extinction. The mechanisms for this pattern remain elusive. In this article, we investigate the macroevolutionary predictions of an individual-based birth-death model (BDI model) where speciation and extinction rates emerge from population dynamics. We start with the simplest neutral model in which every individual has the same per capita rates of birth, death, and speciation. Although the prediction of the simplest neutral model agrees qualitatively with the fossil pattern, the predicted decline in perspecies speciation rates is too fast to explain the long-term trend in fossil data. We thus consider models with variation among species in per capita rates of speciation and a suite of alternative assumptions about the heritability of speciation rate. The results show that interspecific variation in per capita speciation rate can induce differences among species in their ability to resist extinction because a low speciation rate confers a small but important demographic advantage. As a consequence, the model predicts an appropriately slow temporal decline in speciation rates, which provides a mechanistic explanation for the fossil pattern.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E83-E93
JournalAmerican Naturalist
Volume182
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013

Fingerprint

individual-based model
extinction
fossils
interspecific variation
death
prediction
birth rate
fossil
new taxa
heritability
population dynamics
demographic statistics
rate
mass extinction
new taxon
fossil record

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Keywords

  • Birth-death models
  • Macroevolution
  • Neutral theory
  • Origination rate
  • Speciation rate

Cite this

Wang, Shaopeng ; Chen, Anping ; Fang, Jingyun ; Pacala, Stephen Wilson. / Speciation rates decline through time in individual-based models of speciation and extinction. In: American Naturalist. 2013 ; Vol. 182, No. 3. pp. E83-E93.
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Speciation rates decline through time in individual-based models of speciation and extinction. / Wang, Shaopeng; Chen, Anping; Fang, Jingyun; Pacala, Stephen Wilson.

In: American Naturalist, Vol. 182, No. 3, 01.09.2013, p. E83-E93.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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