Hampton L. Carson


Of 103 picture-winged Drosophila species endemic to the high Hawaiian islands, all but three are endemic to single islands or island complexes. They are presumed to have evolved in situ on each island. The banding pattern sequences of the five major polytene chromosomes of these species have been mapped to a single set of Standard sequences. Sequential variation among these chromosomes is due to 213 paracentric inversions. An atlas of their break points is provided. Geographical, morphological and behavioral data may be used to supplement the cytological information in tracing ancestry. Starting at the newer end of the archipelago, the 26 species of the Island of Hawaii (less than 700,000 years old) are inferred to have been derived from 19 founders, 15 from the Maui complex, three from Oahu and one from Kauai. The existence of 40 Maui complex species is explicable as resulting from 12 founders, ten from Oahu and two from Kauai. The 29 Oahu species can be explained by 12 founder events, five from Kauai and seven from Maui complex (summary in Figure 5). Although the ancestry of two Kauai species can be traced to newer islands, the ten remaining ones on this island (age about 5.6 million years) are apparently ancient elements in the fauna, relating ultimately to Palearctic continental sources.

  • Received August 2, 1982.
  • Accepted November 3, 1982.