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How to incorporate intraspecific variation in discrete characters in comparative analyzes?

How to incorporate intraspecific variation in discrete characters in comparative analyzes?



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I'd like to run a multivariate analysis (Pavoine et al. 2011) that aims to disentagle the effect of environmental gradients on traits, considering its autocorrelation with phylogeny and space. It uses the RLQ approach and works with both discrete and continuous traits. However, I don't know how to incorporate intraspecific variation in discrete traits. For example, I recorded categories of pigmentation on organs of several amphibians, but for some species, these categories vary among individuals. One way would be including individuals as polytomies at the species level, but this would make the test quite hard to interpret.

Thank you in advance, Diogo


Kostikova et al. 2016. Syst. Biol. developed an algorithm to model trait evolution with inter- and intraspecific variation. The authors use it to show

whether a life-history trait (i.e. annual versus perennial) influences the evolution of intraspecific variation in the climatic niches of species

While they do not directly incorporate the space component as in the RLQ analysis, the approach might be informative in your case. The functions are available through dryad.


Watch the video: MIT CompBio Lecture 19 - Phylogenetics Fall 2019 (August 2022).