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Body shape evolution of Chromis and Azurina species (Percifomes, Pomacentridae) of the eastern Pacific

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Chromis is a circumglobal tropical and temperate genus with over 84 species of damselfishes. Studies based in osteological and molecular data have cited the relationship between Azurina and Chromis in the eastern Pacific. The main objectives of the study are: (1) to characterize size and shape in all Chromis and Azurina species of the eastern Pacific, (2) explore the phylogenetic signal of external morphology, and (3) present a hypothesis of the diversification process of this group. According to the results, there is no significant relationship between size and shape. The variation in body shape among all species is related to the height of the trunk, position of the snout and eye, and length of the caudal peduncle. The main morphologic variation between Azurina and Chromis is the degree of elongation of the body. Both Azurina species are closely related to C. punctipinnis and C. atrilobata. The morphological pattern of Azurina integrated it into Chromis. The phylogenetic pattern found by geometric morphometric analyses presented a high similarity with previous results based on molecular data. Phylogeny recovered two main clades, slender-bodied and deep-bodied species. This pattern of morphometric variation is closely related to exploitation of two different reef environments.

Affiliations: 1: Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste, Instituto Politécnico Nacional 195, Playa Palo de Santa Rita Sur, La Paz, C.P. 23096, B.C.S. México

  • Supplementary_Table_S1
    • Publication Date : 29 January 2013
    • DOI : 10.1163/15707563-00002407-01
    • File Size: 10671
    • File format:application/pdf

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