Coevolution leaves a stronger imprint on interactions than on community structure
Coevolutionary dynamics act on both species and their interactions in ways that shape ecological communities. It remains unclear, however, how the structure of communities at larger spatial scales inf l uences or is influenced by local coevolutionary processes, and how mechanisms acting at these different scales feedback onto one another. Here we show that, although species interactions vary substantially over a continental gradient, the coevolutionary signif i cance of individual interactions is maintained across different scales. Notably, this occurs despite the fact that observed community variation at the local scale frequently tends to weaken or remove community-wide coevolutionary signal. When considered in terms of the interplay between community ecology and coevolutionary theory, our results demonstrate that individual interactions are capable and indeed likely to show a consistent signature of past coevolution even when woven into communities that do not.