3 years ago

Estimating diversification rates for higher taxa: BAMM can give problematic estimate of rates and rate shifts

John J. Wiens, Andreas L. S. Meyer
Estimates of diversification rates are invaluable for many macroevolutionary studies. Recently, an approach called BAMM (Bayesian Analysis of Macro-evolutionary Mixtures) has become widely used for estimating diversification rates and rate shifts. At the same time, several papers have concluded that estimates of net diversification rates from the method-of-moments (MS) estimators are inaccurate. Yet, no studies have compared the ability of these two methods to accurately estimate clade diversification rates. Here, we use simulations to compare their performance. We found that BAMM yielded relatively weak relationships between true and estimated diversification rates. This occurred because BAMM underestimated the number of rates shifts across each tree, and assigned high rates to small clades with low rates. Errors in both speciation and extinction rates contributed to these errors, showing that using BAMM to estimate only speciation rates is also problematic. In contrast, the MS estimators (particularly using stem group ages), yielded stronger relationships between true and estimated diversification rates, by roughly twofold. Furthermore, the MS approach remained relatively accurate when diversification rates were heterogeneous within clades, despite the widespread assumption that it requires constant rates within clades. Overall, we caution that BAMM may be problematic for estimating diversification rates and rate shifts. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/evo.13378

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.