Theory links dispersal and diversity, predicting the highest diversity at intermediate dispersal levels. However, the modulation of this relationship by macro-eco-evolutionary mechanisms and competition within a landscape is still elusive. We examine the interplay between dispersal, competition and landscape structure in shaping biodiversity over 5 million years in a dynamic archipelago landscape. We model allopatric speciation, temperature niche, dispersal, competition, trait evolution and trade-offs between competitive and dispersal traits. Depending on dispersal abilities and their interaction with landscape structure, our archipelago exhibits two ‘connectivity regimes’, that foster speciation events among the same group of islands. Peaks of diversity (i.e. alpha, gamma and phylogenetic), occurred at intermediate dispersal; while competition shifted diversity peaks towards higher dispersal values for each connectivity regime. This shift demonstrates how competition can boost allopatric speciation events through the evolution of thermal specialists, ultimately limiting geographical ranges. Even in a simple landscape, multiple intermediate dispersal diversity relationships emerged, all shaped similarly and according to dispersal and competition strength. Our findings remain valid as dispersal- and competitive-related traits evolve and trade-off; potentially leaving identifiable biodiversity signatures, particularly when trade-offs are imposed. Overall, we scrutinize the convoluted relationships between dispersal, species interactions and landscape structure on macro-eco-evolutionary processes, with lasting imprints on biodiversity. This article is part of the theme issue ‘Diversity-dependence of dispersal: interspecific interactions determine spatial dynamics’.

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The Royal Society
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

Released under the CC-BY 4.0 ("Attribution 4.0 International") License

Staff publications

Hagen, O., Viana, D. S., Wiegand, T., Chase, J. M., & Onstein, R. (2024). The macro-eco-evolutionary interplay between dispersal, competition and landscape structure in generating biodiversity. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 379(1907). doi:10.1098/rstb.2023.0140