Phylogeographic structure and gene flow in the scale-eating cichlid Perissodus microlepis (Teleostei, Perciformes, Cichlidae) in southern Lake Tanganyika
2009 (English)In: Zoologica Scripta, ISSN 0300-3256, E-ISSN 1463-6409, Vol. 38, no 3, 257-268 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
One of the most fragmented habitats in freshwater lakes is the rocky littoral zone, where the already richly structured habitat is frequently interspersed with more pronounced barriers such as sandy bays, river estuaries and deep slopes. Although habitat fragmentation generally constrains the dispersal of specialized rock-dwelling species, patterns of population structure vary in sympatric taxa due to species-specific traits. In the present study, we examine the phylogeographic and population genetic structure of Perissodus microlepis, a presumptively highly mobile scale-eating cichlid fish endemic to Lake Tanganyika with a lake-wide distribution in the rocky littoral zone and no obvious geographical colour variation. Analysis of the mitochondrial DNA of six populations in the southern end of the lake suggests isolation by distance along rocky shoreline. Across a large muddy bay, a phylogeographic break indicates that environmental barriers restrict gene flow even in this highly mobile species. Restricted dispersal across the bay is not necessarily a consequence of an intrinsic propensity to avoid sand, but may be connected with the association between P. microlepis and other rock-dwelling fish, which the scale-eaters mimic and intermingle in order to be able to approach other fish to rip off scales from their bodies.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 38, no 3, 257-268 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-129126DOI: 10.1111/j.1463-6409.2008.00378.xISI: 000265041500003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-129126DiVA: diva2:337692