Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : Some species of Cataglyphis desert ants have evolved a hybridogenetic mode of reproduction at the social scale. In hybridogenetic populations, two distinct genetic lineages coexist. Non-reproductive offspring (workers) are hybrids of the two lineages, whereas sexual offspring (males and new queens) are produced by parthenogenesis and belong to the mother queen lineage. How this unusual reproductive system affects phylogeographic patterns and speciation processes remains completely unknown to date. Using one mitochondrial and four nuclear genes, we examined the phylogenetic relationships between three species of Cataglyphis (C. hispanica, C. humeya and C. velox) where complex DNA inheritance through social hybridogenesis may challenge phylogenetic inference. Our results bring two important insights. First, our data confirm a hybridogenetic mode of reproduction across the whole distribution range of the species C. hispanica. In contrast, they do not provide support for hybridogenesis in the populations sampled of C. humeya and C. velox. This suggests that these populations are not hybridogenetic, or that hybridogenesis is too recent to result in reciprocally monophyletic lineages on nuclear genes. Second, due to mitochondrial introgression between lineages (Darras and Aron, 2015), the faster-evolving COI marker is not lineage specific, hence, unsuitable to further investigate the segregation of lineages in the species studied. Different mitochondrial haplotypes occur in each locality sampled, resulting in strongly structured populations. This micro-allopatric structure leads to over-splitting species delimitation on mitochondrial gene, as every locality could potentially be considered a putative species; haploweb analyses of nuclear markers, however, yield species delimitations that are consistent with morphology. Overall, this study highlights how social hybridogenesis varies across species and shapes complex phylogeographic patterns.