Definition of allopatric in US English:



  • 1(of animals or plants, especially of related species or populations) occurring in separate non-overlapping geographical areas.

    Compare with sympatric
    • ‘Patterns of diversity of beech in Europe are not complicated by the existence of interfertile species, except for the presence of an allopatric related beech species in Asia minor.’
    • ‘Biological species status is more complex, and application of the biological species concept to allopatric populations is problematic.’
    • ‘The two species have a largely allopatric altitudinal distribution on Hokkaido Island, Japan, proposed to be the result of temperature-mediated competition.’
    • ‘Some zoogeographic species consist of two or more related populations that are allopatric in distribution (geographically separate) and are inferred to be reproductively isolated from each other.’
    • ‘For example, have allopatric populations of a parasitic species independently evolved egg or nestling mimicry of the same host species?’
    1. 1.1 (of speciation) taking place as a result of allopatric separation.
      • ‘In the classic case of allopatric speciation, gene flow is eliminated completely because of a geographic barrier.’
      • ‘Such barriers are some kind of geographic feature which isolates parts of populations, and leads to allopatric speciation.’
      • ‘If most speciation is allopatric, what would we expect to see in terms of the fossil record?’
      • ‘Relatively large genetic distances between populations suggest long periods of isolation and allopatric speciation.’
      • ‘I have no competence to debate his scientific ideas - if speciation is mostly allopatric, or if it is sympatric, or something else, that is not a philosophical matter.’


1940s: from allo- ‘other’ + Greek patra ‘fatherland’ + -ic.