|Hydrobia and Ockham's razor: a reply to A.J. Cherrill|
Fenchel, T. (1988). Hydrobia and Ockham's razor: a reply to A.J. Cherrill. Oikos (Kbh.) 51(1): 113-114
In: Oikos (København). Munksgaard/Munksgaard International: Copenhagen. ISSN 0030-1299, more
Competition; Predation; Size distribution; Hydrobia Hartmann, 1821 [WoRMS]; Marine
The author was pleased to learn that Hydrobia is considered a "classic" case of character displacement (Cherrill 1988). In his mind, the classic example is really the Galapagos finches. Darwin first saw what must have happened, Lack (1947) inferred that the process is still going on, and finally the heritability and functional significance of the involved traits has been demonstrated and the selection forces estimated by Grant (1981, 1983, 1986). Cherrill (1988) raises a number of objections to the author's interpretation of the size distribution of Hydrobia species in different populations and to the experimental data which support this interpretation (Fenchel 1975a, b, Fenchel and Kofoed 1976). The objections are mainly based on the observation of complexities in the biology of these snails of which he was not aware or did not take into account.