2018 CSDMS meeting-023


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Coupled models of landscape and species evolution

Nathan Lyons, Tulane University New Orleans Louisiana, United States. nlyons@tulane.edu
Nicole Gasparini, Tulane University New Orleans Louisiana, United States. ngaspari@tulane.edu

Changes in landscape structure are known to affect species macroevolution largely by altering habitat connectivity. Species can disperse across a greater area when habitats expand. Habitat fragmentation reduces gene flow and increases rates of speciation. Conversely, a shrinking habitat increases the likelihood of species extinction.

We integrated macroevolution processes (dispersal, speciation, and extinction) into the landscape evolution modeling toolkit called Landlab. Here, we present a new Landlab component, BiotaEvolver that tracks and evolves the species introduced to a model grid. In one model, surface process components evolve the landscape and BiotaEvolver evolves the species in response to topographic change or other characteristics of the model set by the user. BiotaEvolver provides a base species and users can subclass this object to define properties and behaviors of species types.

We demonstrate BiotaEvolver using scenarios of drainage rearrangement and stream species. Stream captures and high macroevolution process rates occurred within a limited combination of parameters and conditions in hundreds of model runs. The number of species increased most rapidly after a response period following a perturbation. Species numbers declined then became stable after this period.