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On the Geographical Ecology and Evolution of the Three-toed Woodpeckers, Picoides tridactylus and P. arcticus

Carl E. Bock and Jane H. Bock
The American Midland Naturalist
Vol. 92, No. 2 (Oct., 1974), pp. 397-405
DOI: 10.2307/2424304
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2424304
Page Count: 9
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
On the Geographical Ecology and Evolution of the Three-toed Woodpeckers, Picoides tridactylus and P. arcticus
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Abstract

The distribution, ecology and evolution of the three-toed woodpeckers (Picoides) is given a new explanation resolving certain biogeographical paradoxes. One species, Picoides tridactylus, is circumboreally distributed with spruce (Picea), while the other species, P. arcticus, is a larger bird adapted to and distributed with North American closed boreal and montane coniferous forests. It seems highly likely that speciation occurred in North America during Pleistocene glaciation, when pre-tridactylus populations became isolated in the sprucedominated refugium of interior Alaska, and arcticus evolved in more substantial and diverse coniferous forests south of the ice cap.

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