From the Himalayas to a continental Island: Integrative species delimitation in the Brownish-flanked Bush Warbler Horornis fortipes complex

Chentao Wei, Lu Dong, Shou Hsien Li, Per Alström, Yang Liu, Canwei Xia, Cheng Te Yao, Yanyun Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


As species serve as basic units of study in many fields of biology, assessments of species limits are fundamental for such studies. Here, we used a multilocus dataset and different coalescent-based methods to analyze species delimitation and phylogenetic relationships in the Brownish-flanked Bush Warbler Horornis fortipes complex, which is widespread in the Sino-Himalayan region. We also examined the vocal and morphometric divergence within this complex. Our genetic results suggested that Horornis fortipes is composed of at least three independently evolving lineages, which diverged 1.1–1.8 million years ago. However, these lineages have hardly diverged in song or morphometrics and only very slightly in plumage. Our result indicate that there are three incipient species in Horonis fortipes complex diverged in central Himalayas and Hengduan Mountains, but not between the continent and Taiwan island.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-227
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Feb



  • Coalescent-based species delimitation
  • Horornis fortipes
  • Incipient species
  • Multispecies coalescent

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

Cite this