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A common boundary between distinct northern and southern morphotypes in two unrelated Tasmanian rainforest species


Barnes, RW and Jordan, GJ and Hill, RS and McCoull, CJ, A common boundary between distinct northern and southern morphotypes in two unrelated Tasmanian rainforest species, Australian Journal of Botany, 48, (4) pp. 481-491. ISSN 0067-1924 (2000) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1071/BT98044


The variation in selected leaf morphological traits was examined across the geographic ranges of two Tasmanian rainforest species, Tasmannia lanceolata (Poiret) A.C.Smith and Eucryphia milliganii Hook.f. Comparisons of field- and glasshouse-grown plants for both species showed that there is strong genetic control of all the morphological characters measured. Two distinct morphotypes, occupying similar areas of Tasmania, were identified in each species. The geographic boundary between the morphotypes is similar in both species and runs more or less east-west, separating each species into northern and southern forms. Southern E. milliganii differs from the northern form in having ovate leaves with dense marginal trichomes and a pubescent abaxial leaf lamina. A new sub-species, E. milliganii ssp. pubescens, is described to encompass this intra-specific variation in southern Tasmania. Southern T. lanceolata has encrypted stomata, contrasting with the superficial stomata of the northern form, but is not considered sufficiently different to warrant separate taxonomic status. The boundary is difficult to explain in terms of modern environmental factors. A past period of significantly different climate from the present, perhaps combined with anthropogenic fire regimes, may have enabled allopatric differentiation within each species.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Evolutionary biology
Research Field:Plant and fungus systematics and taxonomy
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences
UTAS Author:Barnes, RW (Dr Richard Barnes)
UTAS Author:Jordan, GJ (Professor Greg Jordan)
UTAS Author:McCoull, CJ (Dr Colin McCoull)
ID Code:20110
Year Published:2000
Web of Science® Times Cited:9
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2000-08-01
Last Modified:2011-08-04

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