Intraspecific morphological and reproductive trait variation in mouth almighty Glossamia aprion (Apogonidae) across different flow environments

Janine E.D. Abecia, Osmar J. Luiz, Alison J. King

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    Abstract

    Intraspecific variability, although comparably less studied than interspecific variation, is an important tool in understanding population responses to environmental gradients. This study investigated intraspecific trait variation across three contrasting aquatic flow habitat types (intermittent creek, billabong and river) in a common mouth-brooding freshwater fish in northern Australia, the mouth almighty Glossamia aprion. Samples of G. aprion were collected at various sites, within the Daly River catchment. It was predicted that a number of morphological and reproductive traits would vary among individuals across the contrasting habitats. Five out of the nine morphological and reproductive traits studied significantly varied across flow habitat types. Significant intraspecific variation in functional traits related to foraging and reproduction, such as relative eye size, eye vertical position and relative maxillary length in males suggest that the inherent characteristics of each flow habitat type could be exerting selective pressure on the morphology of G. aprion. Interestingly, traits related to swimming performance (body lateral shape) and manoeuvrability (pectoral fin ventral position) differed between flow habitat types but showed inconsistent responses to predictions. Whilst this study was temporally and spatially limited, it highlights that intraspecific variability in morphological traits can occur among flow habitat types over relatively small spatial scales.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)961-971
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of Fish Biology
    Volume93
    Issue number5
    Early online date29 Sep 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2018

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    reproductive traits
    habitat type
    mouth
    habitats
    billabong
    eyes
    interspecific variation
    maneuverability
    intraspecific variation
    environmental gradient
    rivers
    river
    freshwater fish
    fins
    Aprion
    Apogonidae
    Glossamia
    catchment
    foraging
    habitat

    Cite this

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    abstract = "Intraspecific variability, although comparably less studied than interspecific variation, is an important tool in understanding population responses to environmental gradients. This study investigated intraspecific trait variation across three contrasting aquatic flow habitat types (intermittent creek, billabong and river) in a common mouth-brooding freshwater fish in northern Australia, the mouth almighty Glossamia aprion. Samples of G. aprion were collected at various sites, within the Daly River catchment. It was predicted that a number of morphological and reproductive traits would vary among individuals across the contrasting habitats. Five out of the nine morphological and reproductive traits studied significantly varied across flow habitat types. Significant intraspecific variation in functional traits related to foraging and reproduction, such as relative eye size, eye vertical position and relative maxillary length in males suggest that the inherent characteristics of each flow habitat type could be exerting selective pressure on the morphology of G. aprion. Interestingly, traits related to swimming performance (body lateral shape) and manoeuvrability (pectoral fin ventral position) differed between flow habitat types but showed inconsistent responses to predictions. Whilst this study was temporally and spatially limited, it highlights that intraspecific variability in morphological traits can occur among flow habitat types over relatively small spatial scales.",
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    Intraspecific morphological and reproductive trait variation in mouth almighty Glossamia aprion (Apogonidae) across different flow environments. / Abecia, Janine E.D.; Luiz, Osmar J.; King, Alison J.

    In: Journal of Fish Biology, Vol. 93, No. 5, 01.11.2018, p. 961-971.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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