Ecological speciation can proceed despite genetic interchange when selection counteracts the homogenizing effects of migration. We tested predictions of this divergence-with-gene-flow model in Coeligena helianthea and C. bonapartei, 2 parapatric Andean hummingbirds with marked plumage divergence. We sequenced putatively neutral markers (mitochondrial DNA [mtDNA] and nuclear ultraconserved elements [UCEs]) to examine genetic structure and gene flow, and a candidate gene (MC1R) to assess its role underlying divergence in coloration. We also tested the prediction of Gloger's rule that darker forms occur in more humid environments, and examined morphological variation to assess adaptive mechanisms potentially promoting divergence. Genetic differentiation between species was low in both ND2 and UCEs. Coalescent estimates of migration were consistent with divergence with gene flow, but we cannot reject incomplete lineage sorting reflecting recent speciation as an explanation for patterns of genetic variation. MC1R variation was unrelated to phenotypic differences. Species did not differ in macroclimatic niches but were distinct in morphology. Although we reject adaptation to variation in macroclimatic conditions as a cause of divergence, speciation may have occurred in the face of gene flow driven by other ecological pressures or by sexual selection. Marked phenotypic divergence with no neutral genetic differentiation is remarkable for Neotropical birds, and makes C. helianthea and C. bonapartei an appropriate system in which to search for the genetic basis of species differences employing genomics.
Vol. 136 • No. 4
Vol. 136 • No. 4