Full Text Available Abstract Background The cichlid fishes in general, and the exceptionally diverse East African haplochromine cichlids in particular, are famous examples of adaptive radiation and explosive speciation. Here we report the collection and annotation of more than 12,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs generated from three different cDNA libraries obtained from the East African haplochromine cichlid species Astatotilapia burtoni and Metriaclima zebra. Results We first annotated more than 12,000 newly generated cichlid ESTs using the Gene Ontology classification system. For evolutionary analyses, we combined these ESTs with all available sequence data for haplochromine cichlids, which resulted in a total of more than 45,000 ESTs. The ESTs represent a broad range of molecular functions and biological processes. We compared the haplochromine ESTs to sequence data from those available for other fish model systems such as pufferfish (Takifugu rubripes and Tetraodon nigroviridis, trout, and zebrafish. We characterized genes that show a faster or slower rate of base substitutions in haplochromine cichlids compared to other fish species, as this is indicative of a relaxed or reinforced selection regime. Four of these genes showed the signature of positive selection as revealed by calculating Ka/Ks ratios. Conclusion About 22% of the surveyed ESTs were found to have cichlid specific rate differences suggesting that these genes might play a role in lineage specific characteristics of cichlids. We also conclude that the four genes with a Ka/Ks ratio greater than one appear as good candidate genes for further work on the genetic basis of evolutionary success of haplochromine cichlid fishes.
Scott A Juntti
Full Text Available Cichlid fishes represent one of the most species-rich and rapid radiations of a vertebrate family. These ~2200 species, predominantly found in the East African Great Lakes, exhibit dramatic differences in anatomy, physiology, and behavior. However, the genetic bases for this radiation, and for the control of their divergent traits, are unknown. A flood of genomic and transcriptomic data promises to suggest mechanisms underlying the diversity, but transgenic technology will be needed to rigorously test the hypotheses generated. Here we demonstrate the successful use of the Tol2 transposon system to generate transgenic Astatotilapia burtoni, a haplochromine cichlid from Lake Tanganyika, carrying the GFP transgene under the control of the ubiquitous EF1α promoter. The transgene integrates into the genome, is successfully passed through the germline, and the widespread GFP expression pattern is stable across siblings and multiple generations. The stable inheritance and expression patterns indicate that the Tol2 system can be applied to generate A. burtoni transgenic lines. Transgenesis has proven to be a powerful technology for manipulating genes and cells in other model organisms and we anticipate that transgenic A. burtoni and other cichlids will be used to test the mechanisms underlying behavior and speciation.
Renn, Susan C.P.; Aubin-Horth, Nadia; Hofmann, Hans A.
Behaviour and physiology are regulated by both environment and social context. A central goal in the study of the social control of behaviour is to determine the underlying physiological, cellular and molecular mechanisms in the brain. The African cichlid fish Astatotilapia burtoni has long been used as a model system to study how social interactions regulate neural and behavioural plasticity. In this species, males are either socially dominant and reproductively active or subordinate and rep...
Full Text Available Abstract Background Cichlid fishes have been the subject of increasing scientific interest because of their rapid adaptive radiation which has led to an extensive ecological diversity and their enormous importance to tropical and subtropical aquaculture. To increase our understanding of chromosome evolution among cichlid species, karyotypes of one Asian, 22 African, and 30 South American cichlid species were investigated, and chromosomal data of the family was reviewed. Results Although there is extensive variation in the karyotypes of cichlid fishes (from 2n = 32 to 2n = 60 chromosomes, the modal chromosome number for South American species was 2n = 48 and the modal number for the African ones was 2n = 44. The only Asian species analyzed, Etroplus maculatus, was observed to have 46 chromosomes. The presence of one or two macro B chromosomes was detected in two African species. The cytogenetic mapping of 18S ribosomal RNA (18S rRNA gene revealed a variable number of clusters among species varying from two to six. Conclusions The karyotype diversification of cichlids seems to have occurred through several chromosomal rearrangements involving fissions, fusions and inversions. It was possible to identify karyotype markers for the subfamilies Pseudocrenilabrinae (African and Cichlinae (American. The karyotype analyses did not clarify the phylogenetic relationship among the Cichlinae tribes. On the other hand, the two major groups of Pseudocrenilabrinae (tilapiine and haplochromine were clearly discriminated based on the characteristics of their karyotypes. The cytogenetic mapping of 18S ribosomal RNA (18S rRNA gene did not follow the chromosome diversification in the family. The dynamic evolution of the repeated units of rRNA genes generates patterns of chromosomal distribution that do not help follows the phylogenetic relationships among taxa. The presence of B chromosomes in cichlids is of particular interest because they may not be represented in
Full Text Available African cichlid fishes are an ideal system for studying explosive rates of speciation and the origin of diversity in adaptive radiation. Within the last few million years, more than 2000 species have evolved in the Great Lakes of East Africa, the largest adaptive radiation in vertebrates. These young species show spectacular diversity in their coloration, morphology and behavior. However, little is known about the genomic basis of this astonishing diversity. Recently, five African cichlid genomes were sequenced, including that of the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus, a basal and only relatively moderately diversified lineage, and the genomes of four representative endemic species of the adaptive radiations, Neolamprologus brichardi, Astatotilapia burtoni, Metriaclima zebra, and Pundamila nyererei. Using the tilapia genome as the reference genome, we generated a high-resolution genomic variation map, consisting of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs, short insertions and deletions (indels, inversions and deletions. In total, around 18.8, 17.7, 17.0 and 17.0 million SNPs, 2.3, 2.2, 1.4 and 1.9 million indels, 262, 306, 162, and 154 inversions, and 3509, 2705, 2710 and 2634 deletions were inferred to have evolved in the N. brichardi, A. burtoni, P. nyererei and M. zebra respectively. Many of these variations affected the annotated gene regions in the genome. Different patterns of genetic variation were detected during the adaptive radiation of African cichlid fishes. For SNPs, the highest rate of evolution was detected in the common ancestor of N. brichardi, A. burtoni, P. nyererei and M. zebra. However, for the evolution of inversions and deletions, we found that the rates at the terminal taxa are substantially higher than the rates at the ancestral lineages. The high-resolution map provides an ideal opportunity to understand the genomic bases of the adaptive radiation of African cichlid fishes.
Full Text Available The gut microbiota structure reflects both a host phylogenetic history and a signature of adaptation to the host ecological, mainly trophic niches. African cichlid fishes, with their array of closely related species that underwent a rapid dietary niche radiation, offer a particularly interesting system to explore the relative contribution of these two factors in nature. Here we surveyed the host intra- and interspecific natural variation of the gut microbiota of five cichlid species from the monophyletic tribe Perissodini of lake Tanganyika, whose members transitioned from being zooplanktivorous to feeding primarily on fish scales. The outgroup riverine species Astatotilapia burtoni, largely omnivorous, was also included in the study. Fusobacteria, Firmicutes and Proteobacteria represented the dominant components in the gut microbiota of all 30 specimens analysed according to two distinct 16S rRNA markers. All members of the Perissodini tribe showed a homogenous pattern of microbial alpha and beta diversities, with no significant qualitative differences, despite changes in diet. The recent diet shift between zooplantkon- and scale-eaters simply reflects on a significant enrichment of Clostridium taxa in scale-eaters where they might be involved in the scale metabolism. Comparison with the omnivorous species A. burtoni suggests that, with increased host phylogenetic distance and/or increasing herbivory, the gut microbiota begins differentiating also at qualitative level. The cichlids show presence of a large conserved core of taxa and a small set of core OTUs (average 13-15%, remarkably stable also in captivity, and putatively favoured by both restricted microbial transmission among related hosts (putatively enhanced by mouthbrooding behavior and common host constraints. This study sets the basis for a future large-scale investigation of the gut microbiota of cichlids and its adaptation in the process of the host adaptive radiation.
Brawand, David; Russell, Pamela
Cichlid fishes are famous for large, diverse and replicated adaptive radiations in the Great Lakes of East Africa. To understand the molecular mechanisms underlying cichlid phenotypic diversity, we sequenced the genomes and transcriptomes of five lineages of African cichlids: the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), an ancestral lineage with low diversity; and four members of the East African lineage: Neolamprologus brichardi/pulcher (older radiation, Lake Tanganyika), Metriaclima zebra (rec...
Ready, J S; Sampaio, I; Schneider, H; Vinson, C; Dos Santos, T; Turner, G F
Laboratory mate choice experiments have confirmed species status for cichlid fish in the African Great Lakes that differ in colour and little else. Colour differences between allopatric populations of the South American cichlid genus Apistogramma are known for many species, yet the status of such populations has not been previously tested. Analysis of the genetic relationships and mate choice characteristics of populations previously described as Apistogramma caetei from eastern Amazonia indicates genetic differentiation into at least three allopatric lineages, which also show strong prezygotic isolation through female mate choice, confirming them as Biological species. If future studies confirm that this result is indicative of a general trend, the species richness of the South American cichlid fishes may presently be seriously underestimated. PMID:16780514
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The explosively radiating evolution of cichlid fishes of Lake Malawi has yielded an amazing number of haplochromine species estimated as many as 500 to 800 with a surprising degree of diversity not only in color and stripe pattern but also in the shape of jaw and body among them. As these morphological diversities have been a central subject of adaptive speciation and taxonomic classification, such high diversity could serve as a foundation for automation of species identification of cichlids. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDING: Here we demonstrate a method for automatic classification of the Lake Malawi cichlids based on computer vision and geometric morphometrics. For this end we developed a pipeline that integrates multiple image processing tools to automatically extract informative features of color and stripe patterns from a large set of photographic images of wild cichlids. The extracted information was evaluated by statistical classifiers Support Vector Machine and Random Forests. Both classifiers performed better when body shape information was added to the feature of color and stripe. Besides the coloration and stripe pattern, body shape variables boosted the accuracy of classification by about 10%. The programs were able to classify 594 live cichlid individuals belonging to 12 different classes (species and sexes with an average accuracy of 78%, contrasting to a mere 42% success rate by human eyes. The variables that contributed most to the accuracy were body height and the hue of the most frequent color. CONCLUSIONS: Computer vision showed a notable performance in extracting information from the color and stripe patterns of Lake Malawi cichlids although the information was not enough for errorless species identification. Our results indicate that there appears an unavoidable difficulty in automatic species identification of cichlid fishes, which may arise from short divergence times and gene flow between closely related species.
Alcazar, Rosa M; Becker, Lisa; Hilliard, Austin T; Kent, Kai R; Fernald, Russell D
Male African cichlid fish, Astatotilapia burtoni, have been classified as dominant or subordinate, each with unique behavioral and endocrine profiles. Here we characterize two distinct subclasses of dominant males based on types of aggressive behavior: (1) males that display escalating levels of aggression and court females while they establish a territory, and (2) males that display a stable level of aggression and delay courting females until they have established a territory. To profile differences in their approach to a challenge, we used an intruder assay. In every case, there was a male-male confrontation between the resident dominant male and the intruder, with the intruder quickly taking a subordinate role. However, we found that dominant males with escalating aggression spent measurably more time attacking subordinates than did dominant males with stable aggression that instead increased their attention toward the females in their tank. There was no difference in the behavior of intruders exposed to either type of dominant male, suggesting that escalating aggression is an intrinsic characteristic of some dominant males and is not elicited by the behavior of their challengers. Male behavior during the first 15 min of establishing a territory predicts their aggressive class. These two types of dominant males also showed distinctive physiological characteristics. After the intruder assay, males with escalating aggression had elevated levels of 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT), testosterone, estradiol, and cortisol, while those with stable aggression did not. These observations show that the same stimulus can elicit different behavioral and endocrine responses among A. burtoni dominant males that characterize them as either escalating or stable aggressive types. Our ability to identify which individuals within a population have escalating levels of aggressive responses versus those which have stable levels of aggressive responses when exposed to the same stimulus
Julia J Day
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding the causes of disparities in species diversity across taxonomic groups and regions is a fundamental aim in evolutionary biology. Addressing these questions is difficult because of the need for densely sampled phylogenies and suitable empirical systems. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we investigate the cichlid fish radiation of Lake Tanganyika and show that per lineage diversification rates have been more than six times slower than in the species flocks of Lakes Victoria and Malawi. The result holds even at peak periods of diversification in Lake Tanganyika, ruling out the age of the lake as an explanation for slow average rates, and is robust to uncertainties over the calibration of cichlid radiations in geological time. Moreover, Lake Tanganyika lineages, irrespective of different biological characteristics (e.g. sexually dichromatic versus sexually monochromatic clades, have diversified at similar rates, falling within typical estimates across a range of plant and animal clades. For example, the mostly sexually dichromatic haplochromines, which have speciated explosively in Lakes Victoria and Malawi, have displayed modest rates in Lake Tanganyika (where they are called Tropheini. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results show that either the Lake Tanganyika environment is less conducive for cichlid speciation or the remarkable diversifying abilities of the haplochromines were inhibited by the prior occupancy of older radiations. Although the results indicate a dominant role for the environment in shaping cichlid diversification, differences in the timing of diversification among the Tanganyikan tribes indicate that biological differences were still important for the dynamics of species build-up in the lake. While we cannot resolve the timing of the radiation relative to the origin of the lake, because of the lack of robust geological date calibrations for cichlids, our results are consistent with a scenario that the
Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Kautt, Andreas F; Kusche, Henrik; Meyer, Axel
Background The enormous diversity found in East African cichlid fishes in terms of morphology, coloration, and behavior have made them a model for the study of speciation and adaptive evolution. In particular, haplochromine cichlids, by far the most species-rich lineage of cichlids, are a well-known textbook example for parallel evolution. Southwestern Uganda is an area of high tectonic activity, and is home to numerous crater lakes. Many Ugandan crater lakes were colonized, apparently indepe...
Verheyen, Erik; Salzburger, Walter; Snoeks, Jos; Meyer, Axel
Lake Victoria harbors a unique species-rich flock of more than 500 endemic haplochromine cichlid fishes. The origin, age, and mechanism of diversification of this extraordinary radiation are still debated. Geological evidence suggests that the lake dried out completely about 14,700 years ago.Onthe basis of phylogenetic analyses of almost 300 DNA sequences of the mitochondrial control region of East African cichlids, we find that the Lake Victoria cichlid flock is derived from the geologically...
Full Text Available Lake Tanganyika is the oldest of the Great Ancient Lakes in the East Africa. This lake harbours about 250 species of cichlid fish, which are highly diverse in terms of morphology, behaviour, and ecology. Lake Tanganyika's cichlid diversity has evolved through explosive speciation and is treated as a textbook example of adaptive radiation, the rapid differentiation of a single ancestor into an array of species that differ in traits used to exploit their environments and resources. To elucidate the processes and mechanisms underlying the rapid speciation and adaptive radiation of Lake Tanganyika's cichlid species assemblage it is important to integrate evidence from several lines of research. Great efforts have been, are, and certainly will be taken to solve the mystery of how so many cichlid species evolved in so little time. In the present review, we summarize morphological studies that relate to the adaptive radiation of Lake Tanganyika's cichlids and highlight their importance for understanding the process of adaptive radiation.
Verheyen Erik; Mack Tanja; Salzburger Walter; Meyer Axel
BackgroundThe adaptive radiations of cichlid fishes in East Africa are well known for their spectacular diversity and their astonishingly fast rates of speciation. About 80% of all 2,500 cichlid species in East Africa, and virtually all cichlid species from Lakes Victoria (~500 species) and Malawi (~1,000 species) are haplochromines. Here, we present the most extensive phylogenetic and phylogeographic analysis so far that includes about 100 species and is based on about 2,000 bp of the mitoch...
Meyer, Britta Silke
The East African cichlids, more precisely the cichlid fishes of Lake Tanganyika, Lake Victoria and Lake Malawi, are among the most famous textbook examples of adaptive radiations. Both hybridization and incomplete lineage sorting explain the high degree of shared gene lineages within these species-flocks. Considerable effort has been put into the understanding of the relationships between and among the main lineages as this is essential to establish the phylogenetic backbone of the East Afric...
Tetsumi Takahashi; Stephan Koblmüller
Lake Tanganyika is the oldest of the Great Ancient Lakes in the East Africa. This lake harbours about 250 species of cichlid fish, which are highly diverse in terms of morphology, behaviour, and ecology. Lake Tanganyika's cichlid diversity has evolved through explosive speciation and is treated as a textbook example of adaptive radiation, the rapid differentiation of a single ancestor into an array of species that differ in traits used to exploit their environments and resources. To elucidate...
Rüber, Lukas; Verheyen, Erik; Meyer, Axel
The current phylogenetic hypothesis for the endemic Lake Tanganyika cichlid fishes of the tribe Eretmodini is based solely on morphology and suggests that more complex trophic morphologies derived only once from a less specialized ancestral condition. A molecular phylogeny of eretmodine cichlids based on partial mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b and control-region sequences was used to reconstruct the evolutionary sequence of trophic adaptations and to test alternative models of morphological di...
Cichlid fishes in African rift lakes have undergone rapid speciation, resulting in "species flocks" with more than 300 endemic species in some of the lakes. Most researchers assume that there is little phenotypic variation in cichlid fishes. I report here extensive phenotypic plasticity in a Neotropical cichlid species. I examined the influence of diet on trophic morphology during ontogeny in Cichlasonia managuense. Two groups of full siblings were fed two different diets for eight months aft...
Full Text Available The cichlid fishes of the East African Great Lakes represent a model especially suited to study adaptive radiation and speciation. With several African cichlid genome projects being in progress, a promising set of closely related genomes is emerging, which is expected to serve as a valuable data base to solve questions on genotype-phenotype relations. The mitochondrial (mt genomes presented here are the first results of the assembly and annotation process for two closely related but eco-morphologically highly distinct Lake Tanganyika cichlids, Petrochromis trewavasae and Tropheus moorii. The genomic sequences comprise 16,588 bp (P. trewavasae and 16,590 bp (T. moorii, and exhibit the typical mitochondrial structure, with 13 protein-coding genes, 2 rRNA genes, 22 tRNA genes, and a non-coding control region. Analyses confirmed that the two species are very closely related with an overall sequence similarity of 96%. We analyzed the newly generated sequences in the phylogenetic context of 21 published labroid fish mitochondrial genomes. Consistent with other vertebrates, the D-loop region was found to evolve faster than protein-coding genes, which in turn are followed by the rRNAs; the tRNAs vary greatly in the rate of sequence evolution, but on average evolve the slowest. Within the group of coding genes, ND6 evolves most rapidly. Codon usage is similar among examined cichlid tribes and labroid families; although a slight shift in usage patterns down the gene tree could be observed. Despite having a clearly different nucleotide composition, ND6 showed a similar codon usage. C-terminal ends of Cox1 exhibit variations, where the varying number of amino acids is related to the structure of the obtained phylogenetic tree. This variation may be of functional relevance for Cox1 synthesis.
Verheyen, Erik; Salzburger, Walter; Snoeks, Jos; Meyer, Axel
Lake Victoria harbors a unique species-rich flock of more than 500 endemic haplochromine cichlid fishes. The origin, age, and mechanism of diversification of this extraordinary radiation are still debated. Geological evidence suggests that the lake dried out completely about 14,700 years ago. On the basis of phylogenetic analyses of almost 300 DNA sequences of the mitochondrial control region of East African cichlids, we find that the Lake Victoria cichlid flock is derived from the geologically older Lake Kivu. We suggest that the two seeding lineages may have already been lake-adapted when they colonized Lake Victoria. A haplotype analysis further shows that the most recent desiccation of Lake Victoria did not lead to a complete extinction of its endemic cichlid fauna and that the major lineage diversification took place about 100,000 years ago. PMID:12649486
Aguinaga, Jefferson Yunis; Marcusso, Paulo Fernandes; Claudiano, Gustavo da Silva; Lima, Bruno Tadeu Marotta; Marotta, Bruno L; Sebastião, Fernanda de Alexandre; Fernandes, João Batista Kochenborger; de Moraes, Flávio Ruas; de Moraes, Julieta Rodini Engracia
The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence and seasonal distribution of the main parasite species in Amazonian ornamental cichlids that affect their trade. The study was conducted from August 2007 to September 2009. We sampled 3042 specimens from 9 different species, of which 9.47% had at least one type of external parasite. 81.25% of the cases occurred in the dry season. Crenicichla anthurus (28.57%) was the most parasitized, followed by Aequidens diadema (26.32%), Pterophyllum scalare (22.69%), Cichlasoma sp. (9.52%), Apistogramma sp. (3.88%) and Symphysodon aequifasciatus (3.66%). Monogenea was the most abundant group of parasites, occurring in 66.67% of the cases, of which 96.88% occurred in the dry season. This parasite infested 95.68% of Pterophyllum scalare, 76.67% of Apistogramma sp, 33.33% of Cichlasoma sp. and 23.81% of Symphysodon aequifasciatus cases. Ichthyophthirius multifiliis infested 100% of Aequidens diadema, 76.19% of Symphysodon aequifasciatus, 66.67% of Cichlasoma sp, 41.67% of Crenicichla anthurus and 23.33% of Apistogramma sp cases. Myxosporidia infested 58.33% of Crenicichla anthurus. Trichodina infested 4.32% of Pterophyllum scalare. The prevalence of these parasites is related to the season, preferred habitat, fish behavior, individual susceptibility and handling of animals during transportation by fishermen. PMID:25909258
Salzburger, Walter; Meyer, Axel; Baric, Sanja; Verheyen, Erik; Sturmbauer, Christian
Lake Tanganyika, the oldest of the East African Great Lakes, harbors the ecologically, morphologically, and behaviorally most complex of all assemblages of cichlid Fishes, consisting of about 200 described species. The evolutionary old age of the cichlid assemblage, its extreme degree of morphological differentiation, the lack of species with intermediate morphologies, and the rapidity of lineage formation havemade evolutionary reconstruction difficult. The number and origin of seeding lineag...
Gonzalez-Voyer, Alejandro; Winberg, Svante; Kolm, Niclas
As with any organ, differences in brain size—after adequate control of allometry—are assumed to be a response to selection. With over 200 species and an astonishing diversity in niche preferences and social organization, Tanganyikan cichlids present an excellent opportunity to study brain evolution. We used phylogenetic comparative analyses of sexed adults from 39 Tanganyikan cichlid species in a multiple regression framework to investigate the influence of ecology, sexual selection and paren...
The question of how genetic variation translates into organismal diversity has puzzled biologists for decades. Despite recent advances in evolutionary and developmental genetics, the mechanisms that underlie adaptation, diversification and evolutionary innovation remain largely unknown. The exceptionally diverse species flocks of cichlid fishes are textbook examples of adaptive radiation and explosive speciation and emerge as powerful model systems to study the genetic basis of animal diversification. East Africa's hundreds of endemic cichlid species are akin to a natural mutagenesis screen and differ greatly not only in ecologically relevant (hence naturally selected) characters such as mouth morphology and body shape, but also in sexually selected traits such as coloration. One of the most fascinating aspects of cichlid evolution is the frequent occurrence of evolutionary parallelisms, which has led to the question whether selection alone is sufficient to produce these parallel morphologies, or whether a developmental or genetic bias has influenced the direction of diversification. Here, I review fitness-relevant traits that could be responsible for the cichlids' evolutionary success and assess whether these were shaped by sexual or natural selection. I then focus on the interaction and the relative importance of sexual vs. natural selection in cichlid evolution. Finally, I discuss what is currently known about the genes underlying the morphogenesis of adaptively relevant traits and highlight the importance of the forthcoming cichlid genomes in the quest of the genetic basis of diversification in this group. PMID:18992003
Klett, Vera; Meyer, Axel
We estimated a novel phylogeny of tilapiine cichlid fish (an assemblage endemic to Africa and the Near East) within the African cichlid fishes on the basis of complete mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2) gene sequences. The ND2 (1,047 bp) gene was sequenced in 39 tilapiine cichlids (38 species and 1 subspecies) and in an additional 14 nontilapiine cichlid species in order to evaluate the traditional morphologically based hypothesis of the respective monophyly of the tilapiine and...
Boileau, Nicolas; Cortesi, Fabio; Egger, Bernd; Muschick, Moritz; Indermaur, Adrian; Theis, Anya; Büscher, Heinz H; Salzburger, Walter
Aggressive mimicry is an adaptive tactic of parasitic or predatory species that closely resemble inoffensive models in order to increase fitness via predatory gains. Although similarity of distantly related species is often intuitively implicated with mimicry, the exact mechanisms and evolutionary causes remain elusive in many cases. Here, we report a complex aggressive mimicry strategy in Plecodus straeleni, a scale-eating cichlid fish from Lake Tanganyika, which imitates two other cichlid species. Employing targeted sequencing on ingested scales, we show that P. straeleni does not preferentially parasitize its models but—contrary to prevailing assumptions—targets a variety of co-occurring dissimilar looking fish species. Combined with tests for visual resemblance and visual modelling from a prey perspective, our results suggest that complex interactions among different cichlid species are involved in this mimicry system. PMID:26399975
Barluenga, Marta; Meyer, Axel
Sympatric speciation is a contentious concept, although theoretical models as well as empirical evidence support its relevance in evolutionary biology. The Midas cichlid species complex (Amphilophus citrinellus, labiatus, zaliosus) from several crater lakes in Nicaragua fits several of the key characteristics of a sympatric speciation model. In particular, in A. citrinellus (i) strong assortative mating on the basis of colour polymorphism and (ii) ecological differentiation based on morpholog...
Maan, Martine E.; van der Spoel, Michael; Jimenez, Paloma Quesada; van Alphen, Jacques J. M.; Seehausen, Ole
Sexual selection by female choice has contributed to the rapid evolution of phenotypic diversity in the cichlid fish species flocks of East Africa. Yet, very little is known about the ecological mechanisms that drive the evolution of female mating preferences. We studied fitness correlates of male n
Sluijs, Inke van der
Mate choice by female cichlid fish from Lake Victoria plays an important role in speciation and the maintenance of species. Females are expected to select against males that are intermediate in their phenotype during the process of speciation driven by sexual selection. To test this, we hybridized t
Maan, ME; Haesler, MP; Seehausen, O; Van Alphen, JJM
In many haplochromine cichlid fish, male nuptial coloration is subject to female mate choice and plays a central role in the evolution of reproductive isolation between incipient species. Intraspecific variation in male coloration may serve as a target for diversifying sexual selection and provide a
Caroly A. Shumway
Full Text Available In this review, I explore the effects of both social organization and the physical environment, specifically habitat complexity, on the brains and behavior of highly visual African cichlid fishes, drawing on examples from primates and birds where appropriate. In closely related fishes from the monophyletic Ectodinii clade of Lake Tanganyika, both forces influence cichlid brains and behavior. Considering social influences first, visual acuity differs with respect to social organization (monogamy versus polygyny. Both the telencephalon and amygdalar homologue, area Dm, are larger in monogamous species. Monogamous species are found to have more vasotocin-immunoreactive cells in the preoptic area of the brain. Habitat complexity also influences brain and behavior in these fishes. Total brain size, telencephalic and cerebellar size are positively correlated with habitat complexity. Visual acuity and spatial memory are enhanced in cichlids living in more complex environments. However habitat complexity and social forces affect cichlid brains differently. Taken together, our field data and plasticity data suggest that some of the species-specific neural effects of habitat complexity could be the consequence of the corresponding social correlates. Environmental forces, however, exert a broader effect on brain structures than social ones do, suggesting allometric expansion of the brain structures in concert with brain size and/or co-evolution of these structures [Current Zoology 56 (1: 144–156 2010].
Maria do Socorro R.F Cacho; Sathyabama Chellappa; Maria Emília Yamamoto
The angel fish, Pterophyllum scalare is a cichlid native to the Amazon Basin of Brazil and is exported as an ornamental fish. In this study the importance of the experience and previous reproductive success of males in mate selection was investigated. In order to investigate reproductive experience, six pairs of males (experienced and inexperienced) and six females were used. Males were placed in an aquarium, where one female was released. Mate selection was verified by the time spent by a fe...
Salzburger, Walter; Meyer, Axel
With more than 3,000 species, the fish family Cichlidae is one of the most species-rich families of vertebrates. Cichlids occur in southern and central America, Africa, Madagascar, and India. The hotspot of their biodiversity is East Africa, where they form adaptive radiations composed of hundreds of endemic species in several lakes of various sizes and ages. The unparalleled species richness of East African cichlids has been something of a conundrum for evolutionary biologists and ecologists, since it has been in doubt whether these hundreds of species arose by allopatric speciation or whether it is necessary to invoke somewhat less traditional models of speciation, such as micro-allopatric, peripatric, or even sympatric speciation or evolution through sexual selection mediated by female choice. Ernst Mayr's analyses of these evolutionary uniquely diverse species assemblages have contributed to a more direct approach to this problem and have led to a deeper understanding of the patterns and processes that caused the formation of these huge groups of species. We review here recent molecular data on population differentiation and phylogenetics, which have helped to unravel, to some extent, the patterns and processes that led to the formation and ecological maintenance of cichlid species flocks. It is becoming apparent that sexually selected traits do play an important role in speciation in micro-allopatric or even sympatric settings. Species richness seems to be roughly correlated with the surface area, but not the age, of the lakes. We observe that the oldest lineages of a species flock of cichlids are often less species-rich and live in the open water or deepwater habitats. While the species flocks of the Lake Malawai and the Lake Victoria areas were shown to be monophyletic, the cichlid assemblage of Lake Tanganyika seems to consist of several independent species flocks. Cichlids emerge as an evolutionary model system in which many fundamental questions in
Sturmbauer, Christian; Meyer, Axel
Since their discovery at the turn of the century, the species assemblages of cichlid fishes in the East African Lakes Victoria, Malawi and Tanganyika have fascinated evolutionary biologists. Many models have attempted to account for the 'explosive' evolution of several hundred species within these lakes. Here we report a case of surprisingly large genetic divergence among populations of the endemic Tropheus lineage of Lake Tanganyika. This lineage of six species contains twice as much genetic...
Nolan, Brian C.
Laboratory activities serve several important functions in undergraduate science education. For neuroscience majors, an important and sometimes underemphasized tool is the use of behavioral observations to help inform us about the consequences of changes that are occurring on a neuronal level. To help address this concern, the following laboratory exercise is presented. The current project tested the prediction that the most dominant fish in a tank of cichlids will have gained the most benefi...
Recent suggestions concerning the age and origin of the flock of haplochromine cichlid fishes in Lake Victoria (East Africa) are considered. These accept as proven the suggestion that Lake Victoria dried out completely in the Late Pleistocene, was dry for several thousand years, and refilled ca. 12400 years ago. Apart from the fact that other geophysical evidence contradicts this claim, its biological implications, which do likewise, have never been considered by those who have accepted it. L...
Meyer, Axel; Kocher, Thomas D.; Basasibwaki, Pereti; Wilson, Allan C.
Lake Victoria, together with its satellite lakes, harbours roughly 200 endemic forms of cichlid fishes that are classified as 'haplo-chromines' and yet the lake system is less than a million years old. This 'flock' has attracted attention because of the possibility that it evolved within the lake from one ancestral species and that biologists are thus presented with a case of explosive evolution. Within the past decade, however, morphology has increasingly emphasized the view that the flock m...
Dijkstra, Peter Douwe
Speciation by sexual selection research has traditionally concentrated on mechanisms for divergence driven via female mate choice (intersexual selection). The pivotal role of competition between members of the same sex (intrasexual selection) has been largely overlooked. In this thesis, I describe a series of experimental studies investigating the role of intrasexual selection in sympatric divergence, using Lake Victoria haplochromine cichlid fish as a model system. Such experiments are neede...
Schaafsma, Sara M.; Groothuis, Ton G. G.
Lateralization of cerebral functions is a fundamental aspect of the organization of brain and behaviour in vertebrates. Sex differences in human lateralization have inspired researchers to postulate several hypotheses concerning the effect of prenatal testosterone on lateralization, but few experimental studies have examined these hypotheses. We investigated whether prenatal testosterone affects strength or direction of lateralization in a cichlid fish, Aequidens rivulatus. Eggs were given a ...
Meyer, Britta S.; Indermaur, Adrian; Ehrensperger, Xenia; Egger, Bernd; Banyankimbona, Gaspard; Snoeks, Jos; Salzburger, Walter
The species flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes are the largest vertebrate adaptive radiations in the world and illustrious textbook examples of convergent evolution between independent species assemblages. Although recent studies suggest some degrees of genetic exchange between riverine taxa and the lake faunas, not a single cichlid species is known from Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and Victoria that is derived from the radiation associated with another of these lakes. Here,...
Meyer, Britta S.; Matschiner, Michael; Salzburger, Walter
Highlights: • We provide a new phylogeny for Lake Tanganyika cichlids using 42 nuclear makers. • Data concatenation and a Bayesian concordance analysis lead to congruent results. • Gene tree discordance hints to past hybridization or incomplete lineage sorting. • The Lamprologini are the sister-group to the ‘H-lineage’. • The Eretmodini are nested within the ‘H-lineage’. Abstract: The species-flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes Victoria, Malawi and ...
Meyer, Britta S; Matschiner, Michael; Salzburger, Walter
The species-flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes Victoria, Malawi and Tanganyika constitute the most diverse extant adaptive radiations in vertebrates. Lake Tanganyika, the oldest of the lakes, harbors the morphologically and genetically most diverse assemblage of cichlids and contains the highest number of endemic cichlid genera of all African lakes. Based on morphological grounds, the Tanganyikan cichlid species have been grouped into 12-16 distinct lineages, so-called tribes. While the monophyly of most of the tribes is well established, the phylogenetic relationships among the tribes remain largely elusive. Here, we present a new tribal level phylogenetic hypothesis for the cichlid fishes of Lake Tanganyika that is based on the so far largest set of nuclear markers and a total alignment length of close to 18kb. Using next-generation amplicon sequencing with the 454 pyrosequencing technology, we compiled a dataset consisting of 42 nuclear loci in 45 East African cichlid species, which we subjected to maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference phylogenetic analyses. We analyzed the entire concatenated dataset and each marker individually, and performed a Bayesian concordance analysis and gene tree discordance tests. Overall, we find strong support for a position of the Oreochromini, Boulengerochromini, Bathybatini and Trematocarini outside of a clade combining the substrate spawning Lamprologini and the mouthbrooding tribes of the 'H-lineage', which are both strongly supported to be monophyletic. The Eretmodini are firmly placed within the 'H-lineage', as sister-group to the most species-rich tribe of cichlids, the Haplochromini. The phylogenetic relationships at the base of the 'H-lineage' received less support, which is likely due to high speciation rates in the early phase of the radiation. Discordance among gene trees and marker sets further suggests the occurrence of past hybridization and/or incomplete lineage sorting in the cichlid
Ferreira, I.A.; Poletto, A.B.; Kocher, T.D.; Mota-Velasco, J.C.; Penman, D.J.; Martins, C.
Cichlid fishes have been the subject of increasing scientific interest because of their rapid adaptive radiation that has led to extensive ecological diversity and because of their enormous importance to tropical and subtropical aquaculture. To further understanding of chromosome evolution among cichlid species, we have comparatively mapped the SATA satellite DNA, the transposable element ROn-1, and repeated sequences in the bacterial artificial chromosome clone BAC-C4E09 on the chromosomes of a range of African species of Cichlidae, using fluorescence in situ hybridization. The SATA satellite DNA was mapped in almost all the centromeres of all tilapiine and haplochromine species studied. The maintenance and centromeric distribution of the SATA satellite DNA in African cichlids suggest that this sequence plays an important role in the organization and function of the centromere in these species. Furthermore, analysis of SATA element distribution clarifies that chromosome fusions occurred independently in Oreochromis and Tilapia genera, and led to the reduced chromosome number detected in O. karongae and T. mariae. The comparative chromosome mapping of the ROn-1 SINE-like element and BAC-C4E09 shows that the repeated sequences have been maintained among tilapiine, haplochromine and hemichromine fishes and has demonstrated the homology of the largest chromosomes among these groups. Furthermore, the mapping of ROn-1 suggested that different chromosomal rearrangements could have occurred in the origin of the largest chromosome pairs of tilapiines and non-tilapiines. PMID:20606399
Full Text Available Abstract Background After a volcano erupts, a lake may form in the cooled crater and become an isolated aquatic ecosystem. This makes fishes in crater lakes informative for understanding sympatric evolution and ecological diversification in barren environments. From a geological and limnological perspective, such research offers insight about the process of crater lake ecosystem establishment and speciation. In the present study we use genetic and coalescence approaches to infer the colonization history of Midas cichlid fishes (Amphilophus cf. citrinellus that inhabit a very young crater lake in Nicaragua-the ca. 1800 year-old Lake Apoyeque. This lake holds two sympatric, endemic morphs of Midas cichlid: one with large, hypertrophied lips (~20% of the total population and another with thin lips. Here we test the associated ecological, morphological and genetic diversification of these two morphs and their potential to represent incipient speciation. Results Gene coalescence analyses [11 microsatellite loci and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA sequences] suggest that crater lake Apoyeque was colonized in a single event from the large neighbouring great lake Managua only about 100 years ago. This founding in historic times is also reflected in the extremely low nuclear and mitochondrial genetic diversity in Apoyeque. We found that sympatric adult thin- and thick-lipped fishes occupy distinct ecological trophic niches. Diet, body shape, head width, pharyngeal jaw size and shape and stable isotope values all differ significantly between the two lip-morphs. The eco-morphological features pharyngeal jaw shape, body shape, stomach contents and stable isotopes (δ15N all show a bimodal distribution of traits, which is compatible with the expectations of an initial stage of ecological speciation under disruptive selection. Genetic differentiation between the thin- and thick-lipped population is weak at mtDNA sequence (FST = 0.018 and absent at nuclear
Franchini, Paolo; Xiong, Peiwen; Fruciano, Carmelo; Meyer, Axel
Cichlid fishes are an ideal model system for studying biological diversification because they provide textbook examples of rapid speciation. To date, there has been little focus on the role of gene regulation during cichlid speciation. However, in recent years, gene regulation has been recognized as a powerful force linking diversification in gene function to speciation. Here, we investigated the potential role of miRNA regulation in the diversification of six cichlid species of the Midas cichlid lineage (Amphilophus spp.) inhabiting the Nicaraguan crater lakes. Using several genomic resources, we inferred 236 Midas miRNA genes that were used to predict the miRNA target sites on 8,232 Midas 3'-UTRs. Using population genomic calculations of SNP diversity, we found the miRNA genes to be more conserved than protein coding genes. In contrast to what has been observed in other cichlid fish, but similar to what has been typically found in other groups, we observed genomic signatures of purifying selection on the miRNA targets by comparing these sites with the less conserved nontarget portion of the 3'-UTRs. However, in one species pair that has putatively speciated sympatrically in crater Lake Apoyo, we recovered a different pattern of relaxed purifying selection and high genetic divergence at miRNA targets. Our results suggest that sequence evolution at miRNA binding sites could be a critical genomic mechanism contributing to the rapid phenotypic evolution of Midas cichlids. PMID:27189980
Full Text Available Abstract Background The availability of a large number of recently sequenced vertebrate genomes opens new avenues to integrate cytogenetics and genomics in comparative and evolutionary studies. Cytogenetic mapping can offer alternative means to identify conserved synteny shared by distinct genomes and also to define genome regions that are still not fine characterized even after wide-ranging nucleotide sequence efforts. An efficient way to perform comparative cytogenetic mapping is based on BAC clones mapping by fluorescence in situ hybridization. In this report, to address the knowledge gap on the genome evolution in cichlid fishes, BAC clones of an Oreochromis niloticus library covering the linkage groups (LG 1, 3, 5, and 7 were mapped onto the chromosomes of 9 African cichlid species. The cytogenetic mapping data were also integrated with BAC-end sequences information of O. niloticus and comparatively analyzed against the genome of other fish species and vertebrates. Results The location of BACs from LG1, 3, 5, and 7 revealed a strong chromosomal conservation among the analyzed cichlid species genomes, which evidenced a synteny of the markers of each LG. Comparative in silico analysis also identified large genomic blocks that were conserved in distantly related fish groups and also in other vertebrates. Conclusions Although it has been suggested that fishes contain plastic genomes with high rates of chromosomal rearrangements and probably low rates of synteny conservation, our results evidence that large syntenic chromosome segments have been maintained conserved during evolution, at least for the considered markers. Additionally, our current cytogenetic mapping efforts integrated with genomic approaches conduct to a new perspective to address important questions involving chromosome evolution in fishes.
Hyuk Je Lee
Full Text Available Scale-eating cichlid fish, Perissodus microlepis, from Lake Tanganyika display handed (lateralized foraging behavior, where an asymmetric 'left' mouth morph preferentially feeds on the scales of the right side of its victim fish and a 'right' morph bites the scales of the left side. This species has therefore become a textbook example of the astonishing degree of ecological specialization and negative frequency-dependent selection. We investigated the strength of handedness of foraging behavior as well as its interaction with morphological mouth laterality in P. microlepis. In wild-caught adult fish we found that mouth laterality is, as expected, a strong predictor of their preferred attack orientation. Also laboratory-reared juvenile fish exhibited a strong laterality in behavioral preference to feed on scales, even at an early age, although the initial level of mouth asymmetry appeared to be small. This suggests that pronounced mouth asymmetry is not a prerequisite for handed foraging behavior in juvenile scale-eating cichlid fish and might suggest that behavioral preference to attack a particular side of the prey plays a role in facilitating morphological asymmetry of this species.
López-Fernández, Hernán; Arbour, Jessica; Willis, Stuart; Watkins, Crystal; Honeycutt, Rodney L; Winemiller, Kirk O
Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis on a set of ecomorphological traits from 27 species of Neotropical cichlids. For most sifting taxa, feeding behavior could be effectively predicted by a linear discriminant function of ecomorphology across multiple clades of sediment sifters, and this pattern could not be explained by shared evolutionary history alone. Additionally, we tested foraging efficiency in seven Neotropical cichlid species, five of which are specialized benthic feeders with differing head morphology. Efficiency was evaluated based on the degree to which invertebrate prey could be retrieved at different depths of sediment. Feeding performance was compared both with respect to feeding mode and species using a phylogenetic ANCOVA, with substrate depth as a covariate. Benthic foraging performance was constant across sediment depths in non-sifters but declined with depth in sifters. The non-sifting Hypsophrys used sweeping motions of the body and fins to excavate large pits to uncover prey; this tactic was more efficient for consuming deeply buried invertebrates than observed among sediment sifters. Findings indicate that similar feeding performance among sediment-sifting cichlids extracting invertebrate prey from shallow sediment layers reflects constraints associated with functional morphology and, to a lesser extent, phylogeny. PMID:24603485
Powder, Kara E; Albertson, R Craig
We have made great strides towards understanding the etiology of craniofacial disorders, especially for 'simple' Mendelian traits. However, the facial skeleton is a complex trait, and the full spectrum of genetic, developmental, and environmental factors that contribute to its final geometry remain unresolved. Forward genetic screens are constrained with respect to complex traits due to the types of genes and alleles commonly identified, developmental pleiotropy, and limited information about the impact of environmental interactions. Here, we discuss how studies in an evolutionary model - African cichlid fishes - can complement traditional approaches to understand the genetic and developmental origins of complex shape. Cichlids exhibit an unparalleled range of natural craniofacial morphologies that model normal human variation, and in certain instances mimic human facial dysmorphologies. Moreover, the evolutionary history and genomic architecture of cichlids make them an ideal system to identify the genetic basis of these phenotypes via quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping and population genomics. Given the molecular conservation of developmental genes and pathways, insights from cichlids are applicable to human facial variation and disease. We review recent work in this system, which has identified lbh as a novel regulator of neural crest cell migration, determined the Wnt and Hedgehog pathways mediate species-specific bone morphologies, and examined how plastic responses to diet modulate adult facial shapes. These studies have not only revealed new roles for existing pathways in craniofacial development, but have identified new genes and mechanisms involved in shaping the craniofacial skeleton. In all, we suggest that combining work in traditional laboratory and evolutionary models offers significant potential to provide a more complete and comprehensive picture of the myriad factors that are involved in the development of complex traits. PMID:26719128
Beier, M.; Hilbig, R.; Anken, R.
Inner ear otolith growth in terms of mineralisation mainly depends on the enzyme carbonic anhydrase (CAH). CAH is located in specialised, mitochondria-rich macular cells (ionocytes), which are involved in the endolymphatic ion exchange, and the enzyme is responsible for the provision of the pH-value necessary for otolithic calcium carbonate deposition. In the present study, for the first time the localisation of histochemically demonstrated CAH was analysed during the early larval development of a teleost, the cichlid fish Oreochromis mossambicus. CAH-reactivity was observed already in stage 7 animals (onset of otocyst development; staging follows Anken et al. [Anken, R., Kappel, T., Slenzka, K., Rahmann, H. The early morphogenetic development of the cichlid fish, Oreochromis mossambicus (Perciformes, Teleostei). Zool. Anz. 231, 1-10, 1993]). Neuroblasts (from which sensory and supporting cells are derived) proved to be CAH-positive. Already at stage 12 (hatch), CAH-positive regions could be attributed to ionocyte containing regions both in the so-called meshwork and patches area of the macula (i.e., clearly before ionocytes can be identified on ultrastructural level or by employing immunocytochemistry). In contrast to the circumstances observed in mammalian species, sensory hair cells stained negative for CAH in the cichlid. With the onset of stage 16 (finray primordia in dorsal fin, yolk-sac being increasingly absorbed), CAH-reactivity was observed in the vestibular nerve. This indicates the onset of myelinisation and thus commencement of operation. The localisation of CAH in the inner ear of fish (especially the differences in comparison to mammals) is discussed on the basis of its role in otolith calcification. Since the vestibular system is a detector of acceleration and thus gravity, also aspects regarding effects of altered gravity on CAH and hence on the mineralisation of otoliths in an adaptive process are addressed.
Full Text Available The theoretical underpinnings of the mechanisms of sociality, e.g. territoriality, hierarchy, and reciprocity, are based on assumptions of individual recognition. While behavioural evidence suggests individual recognition is widespread, the cues that animals use to recognise individuals are established in only a handful of systems. Here, we use digital models to demonstrate that facial features are the visual cue used for individual recognition in the social fish Neolamprologus pulcher. Focal fish were exposed to digital images showing four different combinations of familiar and unfamiliar face and body colorations. Focal fish attended to digital models with unfamiliar faces longer and from a further distance to the model than to models with familiar faces. These results strongly suggest that fish can distinguish individuals accurately using facial colour patterns. Our observations also suggest that fish are able to rapidly (≤ 0.5 sec discriminate between familiar and unfamiliar individuals, a speed of recognition comparable to primates including humans.
Full Text Available Behavioral lateralization has been documented in many vertebrates. The scale-eating cichlid fish Perissodus microlepis is well known for exhibiting lateral dimorphism in its mouth morphology and lateralized behavior in robbing scales from prey fish. A previous field study indicated that this mouth asymmetry closely correlates with the side on which prey is attacked, but details of this species' predation behavior have not been previously analyzed because of the rapidity of the movements. Here, we studied scale-eating behavior in cichlids in a tank through high-speed video monitoring and quantitative assessment of behavioral laterality and kinematics. The fish observed showed a clear bias toward striking on one side, which closely correlated with their asymmetric mouth morphologies. Furthermore, the maximum angular velocity and amplitude of body flexion were significantly larger during attacks on the preferred side compared to those on the nonpreferred side, permitting increased predation success. In contrast, no such lateral difference in movement elements was observed in acoustically evoked flexion during the escape response, which is similar to flexion during scale eating and suggests that they share a common motor control pathway. Thus the neuronal circuits controlling body flexion during scale eating may be functionally lateralized upstream of this common motor pathway.
Taylor Martin I
Full Text Available Abstract Background Research on the evolution of reproductive isolation in African cichlid fishes has largely focussed on the role of male colours and female mate choice. Here, we tested predictions from the hypothesis that allopatric divergence in male colour is associated with corresponding divergence in preference. Methods We studied four populations of the Lake Malawi Pseudotropheus zebra complex. We predicted that more distantly-related populations that independently evolved similar colours would interbreed freely while more closely-related populations with different colours mate assortatively. We used microsatellite genotypes or mesh false-floors to assign paternity. Fisher's exact tests as well as Binomial and Wilcoxon tests were used to detect if mating departed from random expectations. Results Surprisingly, laboratory mate choice experiments revealed significant assortative mating not only between population pairs with differently coloured males, but between population pairs with similarly-coloured males too. This suggested that assortative mating could be based on non-visual cues, so we further examined the sensory basis of assortative mating between two populations with different male colour. Conducting trials under monochromatic (orange light, intended to mask the distinctive male dorsal fin hues (blue v orange of these populations, did not significantly affect the assortative mating by female P. emmiltos observed under control conditions. By contrast, assortative mating broke down when direct contact between female and male was prevented. Conclusion We suggest that non-visual cues, such as olfactory signals, may play an important role in mate choice and behavioural isolation in these and perhaps other African cichlid fish. Future speciation models aimed at explaining African cichlid radiations may therefore consider incorporating such mating cues in mate choice scenarios.
Oldfield, Ronald G
Many species of fishes are aggressive when placed in small aquaria. Aggression can negatively affect the welfare of those individuals toward whom it is directed. Animals may behave aggressively in order to defend resources such as food, shelter, mates, and offspring. The decision to defend depends on the distribution of resources and on ecological factors such as number of competitors, amount of available space, and amount of habitat complexity. This study tested the effects of these factors on aggression in a common aquarium fish, the Midas cichlid (Amphilophus citrinellus). The study found that time spent behaving aggressively was not associated with small-scale differences in group size or available space. Aggression was significantly lower in a large aquarium with a complex habitat. Aquaria of sizes typically used in the companion animal (pet) hobby did not provide optimal welfare for cichlids housed with aggressive conspecifics. The public should be aware that this and similar species require larger aquaria with complex habitat, which elicit more natural behavior. PMID:21932947
Franchini, Paolo; Fruciano, Carmelo; Frickey, Tancred; Jones, Julia C; Meyer, Axel
Gut bacterial communities are now known to influence a range of fitness related aspects of organisms. But how different the microbial community is in closely related species, and if these differences can be interpreted as adaptive is still unclear. In this study we compared microbial communities in two sets of closely related sympatric crater lake cichlid fish species pairs that show similar adaptations along the limnetic-benthic axis. The gut microbial community composition differs in the species pair inhabiting the older of two crater lakes. One major difference, relative to other fish, is that in these cichlids that live in hypersaline crater lakes, the microbial community is largely made up of Oceanospirillales (52.28%) which are halotolerant or halophilic bacteria. This analysis opens up further avenues to identify candidate symbiotic or co-evolved bacteria playing a role in adaptation to similar diets and life-styles or even have a role in speciation. Future functional and phylosymbiotic analyses might help to address these issues. PMID:24733403
Full Text Available Fishes of the family Cichlidae are famous for their spectacular species flocks and therefore constitute a model system for the study of the pathways of adaptive radiation. Their radiation is connected to trophic specialization, manifested in dentition, head morphology, and body shape. Geometric morphometric methods have been established as efficient tools to quantify such differences in overall body shape or in particular morphological structures and meanwhile found wide application in evolutionary biology. As a common feature, these approaches define and analyze coordinates of anatomical landmarks, rather than traditional counts or measurements. Geometric morphometric methods have several merits compared to traditional morphometrics, particularly for the distinction and analysis of closely related entities. Cichlid evolutionary research benefits from the efficiency of data acquisition, the manifold opportunities of analyses, and the potential to visualize shape changes of those landmark-based methods. This paper briefly introduces to the concepts and methods of geometric morphometrics and presents a selection of publications where those techniques have been successfully applied to various aspects of cichlid fish diversification.
Full Text Available Abstract Background The vertebrate brain is composed of several interconnected, functionally distinct structures and much debate has surrounded the basic question of how these structures evolve. On the one hand, according to the 'mosaic evolution hypothesis', because of the elevated metabolic cost of brain tissue, selection is expected to target specific structures mediating the cognitive abilities which are being favored. On the other hand, the 'concerted evolution hypothesis' argues that developmental constraints limit such mosaic evolution and instead the size of the entire brain varies in response to selection on any of its constituent parts. To date, analyses of these hypotheses of brain evolution have been limited to mammals and birds; excluding Actinopterygii, the basal and most diverse class of vertebrates. Using a combination of recently developed phylogenetic multivariate allometry analyses and comparative methods that can identify distinct rates of evolution, even in highly correlated traits, we studied brain structure evolution in a highly variable clade of ray-finned fishes; the Tanganyikan cichlids. Results Total brain size explained 86% of the variance in brain structure volume in cichlids, a lower proportion than what has previously been reported for mammals. Brain structures showed variation in pair-wise allometry suggesting some degree of independence in evolutionary changes in size. This result is supported by variation among structures on the strength of their loadings on the principal size axis of the allometric analysis. The rate of evolution analyses generally supported the results of the multivariate allometry analyses, showing variation among several structures in their evolutionary patterns. The olfactory bulbs and hypothalamus were found to evolve faster than other structures while the dorsal medulla presented the slowest evolutionary rate. Conclusion Our results favor a mosaic model of brain evolution, as certain
Masanori Kohda; Lyndon Alexander Jordan; Takashi Hotta; Naoya Kosaka; Kenji Karino; Hirokazu Tanaka; Masami Taniyama; Tomohiro Takeyama
The theoretical underpinnings of the mechanisms of sociality, e.g. territoriality, hierarchy, and reciprocity, are based on assumptions of individual recognition. While behavioural evidence suggests individual recognition is widespread, the cues that animals use to recognise individuals are established in only a handful of systems. Here, we use digital models to demonstrate that facial features are the visual cue used for individual recognition in the social fish Neolamprologus pulcher. Focal...
Full Text Available Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis on a set of ecomorphological traits from 27 species of Neotropical cichlids. For most sifting taxa, feeding behavior could be effectively predicted by a linear discriminant function of ecomorphology across multiple clades of sediment sifters, and this pattern could not be explained by shared evolutionary history alone. Additionally, we tested foraging efficiency in seven Neotropical cichlid species, five of which are specialized benthic feeders with differing head morphology. Efficiency was evaluated based on the degree to which invertebrate prey could be retrieved at different depths of sediment. Feeding performance was compared both with respect to feeding mode and species using a phylogenetic ANCOVA, with substrate depth as a covariate. Benthic foraging performance was constant across sediment depths in non-sifters but declined with depth in sifters. The non-sifting Hypsophrys used sweeping motions of the body and fins to excavate large pits to uncover prey; this tactic was more efficient for consuming deeply buried invertebrates than observed among sediment sifters. Findings indicate that similar feeding performance among sediment-sifting cichlids extracting invertebrate prey from shallow sediment layers reflects constraints associated with functional morphology and, to a lesser extent, phylogeny.
Meyer, Britta S.; Indermaur, Adrian; Ehrensperger, Xenia; Egger, Bernd; Banyankimbona, Gaspard; Snoeks, Jos; Salzburger, Walter
The species flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes are the largest vertebrate adaptive radiations in the world and illustrious textbook examples of convergent evolution between independent species assemblages. Although recent studies suggest some degrees of genetic exchange between riverine taxa and the lake faunas, not a single cichlid species is known from Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and Victoria that is derived from the radiation associated with another of these lakes. Here, we report the discovery of a haplochromine cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika, which belongs genetically to the species flock of haplochromines of the Lake Victoria region. The new species colonized Lake Tanganyika only recently, suggesting that faunal exchange across watersheds and, hence, between isolated ichthyofaunas, is more common than previously thought. PMID:26064619
Oldfield, Ronald G
Some fishes mature and function as one sex and later transform to the other sex in response to social interactions. Previous evidence suggested that a change in developmental timing may be involved in the evolution of adult sex change in fishes. The most recent support for this idea came from reports that sex in the Midas cichlid, Amphilophus citrinellus, was determined by social conditions experienced at the juvenile stage. Differentiation as a male was reported to be dependent on large body size relative to group-mates, and thought to be mediated through aggressive interactions. Here I demonstrate that socially controlled sex determination does not occur as was originally reported. Previously, I found that sex was not associated with body size in juveniles either in nature or in captivity. Similarly, I found no association between aggressive behavior and sex in juveniles. I later demonstrated that socially controlled sex determination does not typically occur in the Midas cichlid and closely related species and supported an alternative mechanism to explain large body size in adult males. Finally, in the current study I analyze gonad histology of fish from the same population used by the original authors and lay to rest the idea of socially controlled sex determination in this species. Recent observations of socially controlled sex determination in juveniles of species that typically change sex at the adult stage are examples of phenotypic plasticity, not genetic variation. Therefore, juvenile socially controlled sex determination does not support a theory that a change in developmental timing is involved in the evolution of adult sex change in fishes. PMID:21740508
Cacho, M S R F; Yamamoto, M E; Chellappa, S
The species, Pterophyllum scalare distinguishes itself by its breeding behavior, involving competition for territory, sexual partners, courtship and parental care. The purpose of this study was to identify the mating system adopted by this species of fish. Twenty males and twenty females were observed under semi-natural and experimental conditions to test the hypothesis of serial monogamy. Under semi-natural conditions, after the third breeding cycle, the couples changed mates. Under experimental conditions, the couples changed partners after the first breeding cycle. Under experimental conditions, mate recognition was investigated through the preference of the females, indicated by the time they spent with the males. The females were available or not for courtship from new males, depending on their aggressiveness or submission. The larger and more aggressive males obtained new mating opportunities while the submissive males were rejected by the females. The mated fish were aggressive towards intruders in the presence of the mate, protecting their pair bond. In the interval between breeding cycles, the couples did not display aggression towards intruders, confirming the hypothesis of serial monogamy. Best mate selection by the females and the opportunity of new matings for both sexes influenced the reproductive success of this species. PMID:17505764
Full Text Available Abstract Background The adaptive radiations of cichlid fishes in East Africa are well known for their spectacular diversity and their astonishingly fast rates of speciation. About 80% of all 2,500 cichlid species in East Africa, and virtually all cichlid species from Lakes Victoria (~500 species and Malawi (~1,000 species are haplochromines. Here, we present the most extensive phylogenetic and phylogeographic analysis so far that includes about 100 species and is based on about 2,000 bp of the mitochondrial DNA. Results Our analyses revealed that all haplochromine lineages are ultimately derived from Lake Tanganyika endemics. We find that the three most ancestral lineages of the haplochromines sensu lato are relatively species poor, albeit widely distributed in Africa, whereas a fourth newly defined lineage – the 'modern haplochromines' – contains an unparalleled diversity that makes up more than 7% of the worlds' ~25,000 teleost species. The modern haplochromines' ancestor, most likely a riverine generalist, repeatedly gave rise to similar ecomorphs now found in several of the species flocks. Also, the Tanganyikan Tropheini are derived from that riverine ancestor suggesting that they successfully re-colonized Lake Tanganyika and speciated in parallel to an already established cichlid adaptive radiation. In contrast to most other known examples of adaptive radiations, these generalist ancestors were derived from highly diverse and specialized endemics from Lake Tanganyika. A reconstruction of life-history traits revealed that in an ancestral lineage leading to the modern haplochromines the characteristic egg-spots on anal fins of male individuals evolved. Conclusion We conclude that Lake Tanganyika is the geographic and genetic cradle of all haplochromine lineages. In the ancestors of the replicate adaptive radiations of the 'modern haplochromines', behavioral (maternal mouthbrooding, morphological (egg-spots and sexually selected (color
Recent suggestions concerning the age and origin of the flock of haplochromine cichlid fishes in Lake Victoria (East Africa) are considered. These accept as proven the suggestion that Lake Victoria dried out completely in the Late Pleistocene, was dry for several thousand years, and refilled ca. 12400 years ago. Apart from the fact that other geophysical evidence contradicts this claim, its biological implications, which do likewise, have never been considered by those who have accepted it. Like those of all previous authors who have seized on the presence of the haplochromine flock of perhaps more than 600 species as evidence of extremely rapid evolution since the lake allegedly refilled, the account completely overlooks the fact that any such desiccation must have eliminated not only the haplochromine cichlids but the entire biota of the lake. Nevertheless, its present fauna not only includes the haplochromines but many other endemic organisms that would not be expected, and whose presence and history demand an explanation if the lake did indeed dry out. No such explanation has been offered, nor does such seem possible. The recent interpretation of events is questioned and rejected. PMID:11375102
Muschick, Moritz; Nosil, Patrik; Roesti, Marius; Dittmann, Marie Theres; Harmon, Luke; Salzburger, Walter
Adaptive radiation (AR) is a key process in the origin of organismal diversity. However, the evolution of trait disparity in connection with ecological specialization is still poorly understood. Available models for vertebrate ARs predict that diversification occurs in the form of temporal stages driven by different selective forces. Here, we investigate the AR of cichlid fishes in East African Lake Tanganyika and use macroevolutionary model fitting to evaluate whether diversification happened in temporal stages. Six trait complexes, for which we also provide evidence of their adaptiveness, are analysed with comparative methods: body shape, pharyngeal jaw shape, gill raker traits, gut length, brain weight and body coloration. Overall, we do not find strong evidence for the 'stages model' of AR. However, our results suggest that trophic traits diversify earlier than traits implicated in macrohabitat adaptation and that sexual communication traits (i.e. coloration) diversify late in the radiation. PMID:25274371
Meyer, A; Kocher, T D; Basasibwaki, P; Wilson, A C
Lake Victoria, together with its satellite lakes, harbours roughly 200 endemic forms of cichlid fishes that are classified as 'haplochromines' and yet the lake system is less than a million years old. This 'flock' has attracted attention because of the possibility that it evolved within the lake from one ancestral species and that biologists are thus presented with a case of explosive evolution. Within the past decade, however, morphology has increasingly emphasized the view that the flock may be polyphyletic. We sequenced up to 803 base pairs of mitochondrial DNA from 14 representative Victorian species and 23 additional African species. The flock seems to be monophyletic, and is more akin to that from Lake Malawi than to species from Lake Tanganyika; in addition, it contains less genetic variation than does the human species, and there is virtually no sharing of mitochondrial DNA types among species. These results confirm that the founding event was recent. PMID:2215680
Koblmüller, Stephan; Elizabeth A. Odhiambo; Sinyinza, Danny; Sturmbauer, Christian; Sefc, Kristina M
The largely endemic cichlid species flocks of the East African Great Lakes are among the prime examples for explosive speciation and adaptive radiation. Speciation rates differ among cichlid lineages, and the propensity to radiate has been linked to intrinsic and extrinsic factors such as sexual selection and ecological opportunity. Remarkably, only one cichlid tribe—the Boulengerochromini—comprises just a single species, Boulengerochromis microlepis, a predominantly piscivorous endemic of La...
Smith, Adam R.; Moira J. van Staaden; Carleton, Karen L.
Although the cichlids of Lake Malawi are an important model system for the study of sensory evolution and sexual selection, the evolutionary processes linking these two phenomena remain unclear. Prior works have proposed that evolutionary divergence is driven by sensory drive, particularly as it applies to the visual system. While evidence suggests that sensory drive has played a role in the speciation of Lake Victoria cichlids, the findings from several lines of research on cichlids of Lake ...
Mendoza-Franco, Edgar F; Scholz, T; Rozkosná, P
During parasitological research on cichlid fish from the tributaries of the Amazon River around Iquitos, Peru, the following gill monogenoidean species were found: Tucunarella cichlae n. gen. and n. sp. from Cichla monoculus Spix and Agassiz; Gussevia alioides Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1986 from Heros severus Heckel; Gussevia asota Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1989 from Astronotus ocellatus (Agassiz); Gussevia disparoides Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1986 from H. severus (all new geographical records) and Cichlasoma amazonarum Kullander (new host record); Gussevia longihaptor (Mizelle and Kritsky, 1969) Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1986 and Gussevia undulata Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1986 from C. monoculus ; Sciadicleithrum satanopercae Yamada, Takemoto, Bellay, and Pavanelli, 2008 from Satanoperca jurupari Heckel; and Sciadicleithrum variabilum (Mizelle and Kritsky, 1969) Kritsky, Thatcher, and Boeger, 1989 from C. amazonarum (new host and geographical records). Tucunarella n. gen. is proposed to accommodate a new species, Tucunarella cichlae , which is its type and only known species in the genus. The new genus is characterized by, besides a very large body size (about 1.5 mm vs. much less than 1 mm in other ancyrocephaline genera in Amazonia), a thickened tegument, 1 pair of eyes, overlapping gonads (testis dorsal to the germarium), nonarticulated male copulatory organ (MCO) and accessory piece, a coiled (counterclockwise) MCO, a dextral vaginal aperture, a haptor armed with 2 pairs of anchors (each with broad base and subequal roots, which are marginally folded), and dorsal and ventral bars and 14 hooks with protruding blunt thumbs and 2 different shapes (slender vs. slightly expanded shanks). Illustrations and data on morphological and biometric variability of individual species from different hosts are provided. The present data provide evidence of a relatively wide host specificity of gill monogenoideans parasitic in South American cichlids
Yuichi Takeuchi; Michio Hori; Shinya Tada; Yoichi Oda
The scale-eating cichlid Perissodus microlepis with asymmetric mouth is an attractive model of behavioral laterality: each adult tears off scales from prey fishes' left or right flanks according to the direction in which its mouth is skewed. To investigate the development of behavioral laterality and mouth asymmetry, we analyzed stomach contents and lower jaw-bone asymmetry of various-sized P. microlepis (22 ≤ SL
Elmer, Kathryn R; Kusche, Henrik; Lehtonen, Topi K; Meyer, Axel
The polychromatic and trophically polymorphic Midas cichlid fish species complex (Amphilophus cf. citrinellus) is an excellent model system for studying the mechanisms of speciation and patterns of phenotypic diversification in allopatry and in sympatry. Here, we first review research to date on the species complex and the geological history of its habitat. We analyse body shape variation from all currently described species in the complex, sampled from six crater lakes (maximally 1.2 23.9 ky...
Seehausen, Ole; Schluter, Dolph
We propose a new mechanism for diversification of male nuptial-colour patterns in the rapidly speciating cichlid fishes of Lake Victoria. Sympatric closely related species often display nuptial colours at opposite ends of the spectrum with males either blue or yellow to red. Colour polymorphisms within single populations are common too. We propose that competition between males for breeding sites promotes such colour diversification, and thereby speciation. We hypothesize that male aggression...
Hotta, Takashi; Takeyama, Tomohiro; Heg, Dik; Awata, Satoshi; Jordan, Lyndon A.; Kohda, Masanori
Theory suggests that living in large social groups with dynamic social interactions often favors the evolution of enhanced cognitive abilities. Studies of how animals assess their own contest ability commonly focus on a single cognitive task, and little is known about the diversity or co-occurrence of cognitive abilities in social species. We examined how a highly social cichlid fish Julidochromis transcriptus uses four major cognitive abilities in contest situations; direct experience, winne...
Lorin, Thibault; Salzburger, Walter; Böhne, Astrid
The emergence of the steroid system is coupled to the evolution of multicellular animals. In vertebrates in particular, the steroid receptor repertoire has been shaped by genome duplications characteristic to this lineage. Here, we investigate for the first time the composition of the androgen receptor-signaling pathway in ray-finned fish genomes by focusing in particular on duplicates that emerged from the teleost-specific whole-genome duplication. We trace lineage- and species-specific duplications and gene losses for the genomic and nongenomic pathway of androgen signaling and subsequently investigate the sequence evolution of these genes. In one particular fish lineage, the cichlids, we find evidence for differing selection pressures acting on teleost-specific whole-genome duplication paralogs at a derived evolutionary stage. We then look into the expression of these duplicated genes in four cichlid species from Lake Tanganyika indicating, once more, rapid changes in expression patterns in closely related fish species. We focus on a particular case, the cichlid specific duplication of the rac1 GTPase, which shows possible signs of a neofunctionalization event. PMID:26333839
Hesse, Saskia; Thünken, Timo
Living in groups is a widespread phenomenon in many animal taxa. The reduction of predation risk is thought to be an important cause for the formation of groups. Consequently, grouping behavior is particularly pronounced during vulnerable life stages, i.e., as juveniles. However, group living does not only provide benefits but also imposes costs on group members, e.g., increased competition for food. Thus, benefits of grouping behavior might not be evident when predation risk is absent. The adaptive significance of living and also developing in a group independent from predation risk has received relatively little attention although this might have important implications on the evolution and maintenance of group living. The first aim of the present study was to examine whether the social environment affects juvenile performance in the cichlid fish Pelvicachromis taeniatus and, secondly, whether kinship affects social behavior. Kin selection theory predicts benefits from grouping with kin. Here, we demonstrate that juveniles reared in a group grow on average faster compared to juveniles reared in isolation under standardized laboratory conditions without predation risk. Furthermore, we found significant differences in social behavior between juveniles reared in a group and reared in isolation. Fish reared in isolation were significantly more aggressive and less willing to shoal than group-reared fish. As expected, genetic relatedness influenced social behavior in group-reared fish as well: dyads of juveniles consisting of kin showed increased group cohesiveness compared to non-kin dyads. We discuss the potential benefits of group living in general and living with kin in particular.
Klett, Vera; Meyer, Axel
We estimated a novel phylogeny of tilapiine cichlid fish (an assemblage endemic to Africa and the Near East) within the African cichlid fishes on the basis of complete mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2) gene sequences. The ND2 (1,047 bp) gene was sequenced in 39 tilapiine cichlids (38 species and 1 subspecies) and in an additional 14 nontilapiine cichlid species in order to evaluate the traditional morphologically based hypothesis of the respective monophyly of the tilapiine and haplochromine cichlid fish assemblages. The analyses included many additional cichlid lineages, not only the so-called tilapiines, but also lineages from Lake Tanganyika, east Africa, the Neotropics and an out-group from Madagascar with a wide range of parental care and mating systems. Our results suggest, in contrast to the historical morphology-based hypotheses from Regan (1920, 1922 ), Trewavas (1983), and Stiassny (1991), that the tilapiines do not form a monophyletic group because there is strong evidence that the genus Tilapia is not monophyletic but divided into at least five distinct groups. In contrast to this finding, an allozyme analysis of Pouyaud and Agnèse (1995), largely based on the same samples as used here, found a clustering of the Tilapia species into only two groups. This discrepancy is likely caused by the difference in resolution power of the two marker systems used. Our data suggest that only type species Tilapia sparrmanii Smith (1840) should retain the genus name TILAPIA: One particular group of tilapiines (composed of genera Sarotherodon, Oreochromis, Iranocichla, and Tristramella) is more closely related to an evolutionarily highly successful lineage, the haplochromine cichlids that compose the adaptive radiations of cichlid species flocks of east Africa. It appears that the highly adaptable biology of tilapiines is the ancestral state for all African cichlids and that the more stenotypic lifestyle of the haplochromine cichlids is derived from this
We used a field survey and a laboratory rearing experiment to (a) examine response (size and survival) to life-long hypoxia in offspring of the African maternal mouth-brooding cichlid Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae (Seegers) and (b) explore the degree to which developmental response can be environmentally-induced.Embryo size metrics were quantified in 9 field populations across a range of dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations.In the laboratory,first generation (F1) broods of low-DO origin were reared under high or low DO.Brooding period was quantified for the mothers; and egg size,egg metabolic rate and juvenile size-at-release were quantified in their (F2) offspring.The F2 offspring were split and grown for 3 months post-release under high or low DO,and juvenile size and survival were quantified.In the field survey,across stages,embryos from low-DO field populations were shorter and weighed less than embryos from high-DO populations.In the laboratory experiment,F2 eggs and juveniles-at-release from mother's mouth did not differ in mass,length,survival regardless of development DO environment.However,juveniles diverged in size after leaving mother's mouth,exhibiting smaller size when grown under low DO.Size differences in embryo size across field populations and divergence in embryo size after release from the mother's mouthsupport predictions for smaller body size under hypoxia.There was no evidence for negative effects on survival of juveniles after 3 months.Brooding period was 16％ shorter in females reared under low DO suggesting that hypoxia may accelerate embryo development.This work provides insights into how bearer fishes respond to hypoxic stress relative to fishes with no post-spawning parental care; a shorter brooding interval and smaller body size may provide an optimal solution to parent and embryo survival under hypoxia in brooding fishes.
Schönleber, J.; Anken, R. H.
Previous investigations revealed that the growth of fish inner ear otoliths depends on the amplitude and the direction of gravity, thus suggesting the existence of a (negative) feedback mechanism. In the course of these experiments, it was shown that altered gravity both affected otolith size (and thus the provision of the proteinacious matrix) as well as the incorporation of calcium. It is hitherto unknown, as of whether sensory hair cells are involved either in the regulation of otolith growth or in the provision of otolithic material (such as protein or inorganic components) or even both. The ototoxic aminoglycoside gentamicin (GM) damages hair cells in many vertebrates (and is therefore used for the treatment of Meniere's disease in humans). The present study was thus designed to determine as of whether vestibular sensory cells are needed for otolith growth by applying GM in order to induce a (functionally relevant) loss of these cells. Developing cichlid fish Oreochromis mossambicus were therefore immersed in 120 mg/l GM for 10 or 21 days. At the beginning and at the end of the experimental periods, the fish were incubated in the calcium-tracer alizarin complexone (AC). After the experiment, otoliths were dissected and the area grown during GM-exposure (i.e., the area enclosed by the two AC labellings) was determined planimetrically. The results showed that incubating the animals in a GM-solution had no effect on otolith growth, but the development of otolith asymmetry was affected. Ultrastructural examinations of the sensory hair cells revealed that they had obviously not been affected by GM-treatment (no degenerative morphological features observed). Overall, the present results suggest that hair cells are not affected by GM concerning their possible role in (general) otolith growth, but that these cells indeed might have transitionally been impaired by GM resulting in a decreased capacity of regulating otolith symmetry.
The induction of cytochrome P4501A-mediated activity (e.g. ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylation, EROD) has been used as a biomarker for monitoring fish exposure to AhR-receptor ligands such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) and polychlorinated dibenzo-dioxins/furans (PCDD/Fs). In this study we found that hepatic EROD is induced in fish ('Nile tilapia', Oreochromis niloticus and 'acara', Geophagus brasiliensis) from the Guandu River (7-17-fold) and Jacarepagua Lake (7-fold), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Since both cichlid fish are consumed by the local population and the Guandu River is the main source of the drinking water supply for the greater Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area, pollution by cytochrome P4501A-inducing chemicals is a cause for concern and should be further investigated in sediments, water and biota. We additionally showed that EROD activity in the fish liver post-mitochondrial supernatant-simpler, cheaper and less time consuming to prepare than the microsomal fraction-is sufficiently sensitive for monitoring purposes. - Increased EROD activity in the liver of cichlid fishes indicated that Guandu River, the source of drinking water supply for Rio de Janeiro is polluted by CYP1A-inducing chemicals
Parente, Thiago E.M.; Oliveira, Ana C.A.X. de [Laboratorio de Toxicologia Ambiental, Escola Nacional de Saude Publica - FIOCRUZ, Av Brasil 4036, Predio de Expansao do Campus, Rio de Janeiro, RJ 21041-361 (Brazil); Paumgartten, Francisco J.R. [Laboratorio de Toxicologia Ambiental, Escola Nacional de Saude Publica - FIOCRUZ, Av Brasil 4036, Predio de Expansao do Campus, Rio de Janeiro, RJ 21041-361 (Brazil)], E-mail: email@example.com
The induction of cytochrome P4501A-mediated activity (e.g. ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylation, EROD) has been used as a biomarker for monitoring fish exposure to AhR-receptor ligands such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) and polychlorinated dibenzo-dioxins/furans (PCDD/Fs). In this study we found that hepatic EROD is induced in fish ('Nile tilapia', Oreochromis niloticus and 'acara', Geophagus brasiliensis) from the Guandu River (7-17-fold) and Jacarepagua Lake (7-fold), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Since both cichlid fish are consumed by the local population and the Guandu River is the main source of the drinking water supply for the greater Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area, pollution by cytochrome P4501A-inducing chemicals is a cause for concern and should be further investigated in sediments, water and biota. We additionally showed that EROD activity in the fish liver post-mitochondrial supernatant-simpler, cheaper and less time consuming to prepare than the microsomal fraction-is sufficiently sensitive for monitoring purposes. - Increased EROD activity in the liver of cichlid fishes indicated that Guandu River, the source of drinking water supply for Rio de Janeiro is polluted by CYP1A-inducing chemicals.
Da Cuña, Rodrigo H; Rey Vázquez, Graciela; Dorelle, Luciana; Rodríguez, Enrique M; Guimarães Moreira, Renata; Lo Nostro, Fabiana L
The organochlorine pesticide endosulfan (ES) is used in several countries as a wide spectrum insecticide on crops with high commercial value. Due to its high toxicity to non-target animals, its persistence in the environment and its ability to act as an endocrine disrupting compound in fish, ES use is currently banned or restricted in many other countries. Previous studies on the cichlid fish Cichlasoma dimerus have shown that waterborne exposure to ES can lead to both decreased pituitary FSH content and histological alterations of testes. As gonadotropin-stimulated sex steroids release from gonads was inhibited by ES in vitro, the aim of the present study was to elucidate possible mechanisms of disruption of ES on gonadal steroidogenesis in C. dimerus, as well as compare the action of the active ingredient (AI) with that of currently used commercial formulations (CF). Testis and ovary fragments were incubated with ES (AI or CF) and/or steroidogenesis activators or precursors. Testosterone and estradiol levels were measured in the incubation media. By itself, ES did not affect hormone levels. Co-incubation with LH and the adenylate cyclase activator forskolin caused a decrease of the stimulated sex steroids release. When co-incubated with precursors dehydroandrostenedione and 17αhydroxyprogesterone, ES did not affect the increase caused by their addition alone. No differences were observed between the AI and CFs, suggesting that the effect on steroidogenesis disruption is mainly caused by the AI. Results indicate that action of ES takes place downstream of LH-receptor activation and upstream of the studied steroidogenic enzymes. PMID:27235598
Recknagel, Hans; Elmer, Kathryn R; Meyer, Axel
Cichlid fishes are an excellent model system for studying speciation and the formation of adaptive radiations because of their tremendous species richness and astonishing phenotypic diversity. Most research has focused on African rift lake fishes, although Neotropical cichlid species display much variability as well. Almost one dozen species of the Midas cichlid species complex (Amphilophus spp.) have been described so far and have formed repeated adaptive radiations in several Nicaraguan crater lakes. Here we apply double-digest restriction-site associated DNA sequencing to obtain a high-density linkage map of an interspecific cross between the benthic Amphilophus astorquii and the limnetic Amphilophus zaliosus, which are sympatric species endemic to Crater Lake Apoyo, Nicaragua. A total of 755 RAD markers were genotyped in 343 F(2) hybrids. The map resolved 25 linkage groups and spans a total distance of 1427 cM with an average marker spacing distance of 1.95 cM, almost matching the total number of chromosomes (n = 24) in these species. Regions of segregation distortion were identified in five linkage groups. Based on the pedigree of parents to F(2) offspring, we calculated a genome-wide mutation rate of 6.6 × 10(-8) mutations per nucleotide per generation. This genetic map will facilitate the mapping of ecomorphologically relevant adaptive traits in the repeated phenotypes that evolved within the Midas cichlid lineage and, as the first linkage map of a Neotropical cichlid, facilitate comparative genomic analyses between African cichlids, Neotropical cichlids and other teleost fishes. PMID:23316439
Full Text Available Otolithic end organs in fishes function as accelerometers and are involved in the senses of balance and hearing (e.g. Popper et al. 2005. Otolith mass and shape are likely decisive factors influencing otolith motion, but while it is largely unknown how different shapes affect otolith movement relative to the sensory epithelium (Popper et al. 2005, greater otolith mass is predicted to result in enhanced stimulation of sensory hair cells and improved hearing (Lychakov and Rebane 2005. What few studies exist on this topic, however, yielded contradicting results in that they did or did not find a correlation between increased otolith mass and enhanced hearing (see Kéver et al. 2014. We investigated the relationship between otolith morphology (including 3D-models of otoliths based on high-resolution microCT imaging and otolith weight and hearing abilities in cichlids while comparing three species (Etroplus maculatus, Hemichromis guttatus, Steatocranus tinanti with different swimbladder morphology and hearing abilities (Schulz-Mirbach et al. 2014. We predicted Etroplus maculatus—the species that displays the best hearing sensitivities—to possess larger/heavier otoliths. As swimbladder extensions in this species are connected to the lagena, we further predicted to find heavier lagenar otoliths. Compared to H. guttatus and S. tinanti, E. maculatus showed the heaviest saccular otoliths, while lagenar otoliths were significantly thinner and lighter than in the former two species, apparently contradicting the hypothesis that the lagena and its otolith are primarily involved in improved hearing abilities. Our results support the idea that there is no ‘simple’ relationship between otolith weight, ancilliary auditory structures and hearing abilities. 3D-models of inner ears and otoliths may be ideally suited for future studies modeling complex otolith motion and thus, may provide a better understanding of how otolith morphology contributes to inner
Full Text Available Abstract Background Phenotypic evolution and its role in the diversification of organisms is a central topic in evolutionary biology. A neglected factor during the modern evolutionary synthesis, adaptive phenotypic plasticity, more recently attracted the attention of many evolutionary biologists and is now recognized as an important ingredient in both population persistence and diversification. The traits and directions in which an ancestral source population displays phenotypic plasticity might partly determine the trajectories in morphospace, which are accessible for an adaptive radiation, starting from the colonization of a novel environment. In the case of repeated colonizations of similar environments from the same source population this "flexible stem" hypothesis predicts similar phenotypes to arise in repeated subsequent radiations. The Midas Cichlid (Amphilophus spp. in Nicaragua has radiated in parallel in several crater-lakes seeded by populations originating from the Nicaraguan Great Lakes. Here, we tested phenotypic plasticity in the pharyngeal jaw of Midas Cichlids. The pharyngeal jaw apparatus of cichlids, a second set of jaws functionally decoupled from the oral ones, is known to mediate ecological specialization and often differs strongly between sister-species. Results We performed a common garden experiment raising three groups of Midas cichlids on food differing in hardness and calcium content. Analyzing the lower pharyngeal jaw-bones we find significant differences between diet groups qualitatively resembling the differences found between specialized species. Observed differences in pharyngeal jaw expression between groups were attributable to the diet's mechanical resistance, whereas surplus calcium in the diet was not found to be of importance. Conclusions The pharyngeal jaw apparatus of Midas Cichlids can be expressed plastically if stimulated mechanically during feeding. Since this trait is commonly differentiated - among
Wilson, Laura A B; Colombo, Marco; Sánchez-Villagra, Marcelo R; Salzburger, Walter
Phenotype-environment correlations and the evolution of trait interactions in adaptive radiations have been widely studied to gain insight into the dynamics underpinning rapid species diversification. In this study we explore the phenotype-environment correlation and evolution of operculum shape in cichlid fishes using an outline-based geometric morphometric approach combined with stable isotope indicators of macrohabitat and trophic niche. We then apply our method to a sample of extinct saurichthyid fishes, a highly diverse and near globally distributed group of actinopterygians occurring throughout the Triassic, to assess the utility of extant data to inform our understanding of ecomorphological evolution in extinct species flocks. A series of comparative methods were used to analyze shape data for 54 extant species of cichlids (N = 416), and 6 extinct species of saurichthyids (N = 44). Results provide evidence for a relationship between operculum shape and feeding ecology, a concentration in shape evolution towards present along with evidence for convergence in form, and significant correlation between the major axes of shape change and measures of gut length and body elongation. The operculum is one of few features that can be compared in extant and extinct groups, enabling reconstruction of phenotype-environment interactions and modes of evolutionary diversification in deep time. PMID:26584885
Renn, Suzy C P; Fraser, Eleanor J; Aubin-Horth, Nadia; Trainor, Brian C; Hofmann, Hans A
Social environment can affect the expression of sex-typical behavior in both males and females. Males of the African cichlid species Astatotilapia burtoni have long served as a model system to study the neural, endocrine, and molecular basis of socially plastic dominance behavior. Here we show that in all-female communities of A. burtoni, some individuals acquire a male-typical dominance phenotype, including aggressive territorial defense, distinctive color patterns, and courtship behavior. Furthermore, dominant females have higher levels of circulating androgens than either subordinate females or females in mixed-sex communities. These male-typical traits do not involve sex change, nor do the social phenotypes in all-female communities differ in relative ovarian size, suggesting that factors other than gonadal physiology underlie much of the observed variation. In contrast to the well-studied situation in males, dominant and subordinate females do not differ in the rate of somatic growth. Dominant females are not any more likely than subordinates to spawn with an introduced male, although they do so sooner. These results extend the well known extraordinary behavioral plasticity of A. burtoni to the females of this species and provide a foundation for uncovering the neural and molecular basis of social dominance behavior while controlling for factors such as sex, gonadal state and growth. PMID:22285646
Maan, Martine E.; Van Rooijen, Anne M. C.; Van Alphen, Jacques J. M.; Seehausen, Ole
We investigate the role of parasite-mediated sexual selection in the divergence of two species of Lake Victoria cichlids. Pundamilia pundamilia and Pundamilia nyererei represent a common pattern of male nuptial colour divergence between haplochromine sister species: metallic grey-blue in P. pundamil
Maan, Martine E.; Taborsky, Michael
Females of the Lake Tanganyika cichlid Lamprologus callipterus exclusively breed in empty snail shells that males collect in their territories. Male-male competition for shells is severe, leading to frequent shell stealing and territory takeover. As a consequence, males have breeding females in thei
Michael R Kidd
Full Text Available The factors promoting the evolution of parental care strategies have been extensively studied in experiment and theory. However, most attempts to examine parental care in an evolutionary context have evaluated broad taxonomic categories. The explosive and recent diversifications of East African cichlid fishes offer exceptional opportunities to study the evolution of various life history traits based on species-level phylogenies. The Xenotilapia lineage within the endemic Lake Tanganyika cichlid tribe Ectodini comprises species that display either biparental or maternal only brood care and hence offers a unique opportunity to study the evolution of distinct parental care strategies in a phylogenetic framework. In order to reconstruct the evolutionary relationships among 16 species of this lineage we scored 2,478 Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphisms (AFLPs across the genome. We find that the Ectodini genus Enantiopus is embedded within the genus Xenotilapia and that during 2.5 to 3 million years of evolution within the Xenotilapia clade there have been 3-5 transitions from maternal only to biparental care. While most previous models suggest that uniparental care (maternal or paternal arose from biparental care, we conclude from our species-level analysis that the evolution of parental care strategies is not only remarkably fast, but much more labile than previously expected.
Egger, Bernd; Obermüller, Beate; Phiri, Harris; Sturmbauer, Christian; Sefc, Kristina M
Supported by evidence for assortative mating and polygynandry, sexual selection through mate choice was suggested as the main force driving the evolution of colour diversity of haplochromine cichlids in Lakes Malawi and Victoria. The phylogenetically closely related tribe Tropheini of Lake Tanganyika includes the genus Tropheus, which comprises over 100 colour variants currently classified into six morphologically similar, polyphyletic species. To assess the potential for sexual selection in ...
Musilová, Zuzana; Říčan, Oldřich; Janko, Karel; Novák, J.
Roč. 46, - (2008), s. 659-672. ISSN 1055-7903 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Grant ostatní: GA UK(CZ) 182/2004/B-BIO; GA UK(CZ) 139407 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50450515 Keywords : molecular phylogeny * Cichlids * south America Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 3.871, year: 2008
William G. R. Crampton
Full Text Available The discus fishes of the genus Symphysodon are popular ornamental cichlids that occur in floodplain lakes and flooded forests of the lowland Amazon Basin. These habitats are characterized by extreme seasonal fluctuations in the availability of food, shelter and dissolved oxygen, and also the densities of predators and parasites. Most aspects of discus biology are influenced by these fluctuating conditions. This paper reports an autoecological study of the western Amazonian discus S. haraldi (until recently classified as S. aequifasciatus. This species feeds predominantly on algal periphyton, fine organic detritus, plant matter, and small aquatic invertebrates. At high water it forages alone or in small groups in flooded forests. At low water it forms large aggregations in fallen tree crowns along lake margins. Breeding occurs at the beginning of the flood season, ensuring that the progeny are well grown before the next low water period. Symphysodon haraldi is an iteroparous partial spawner, reaches reproductive maturity within a year, and undertakes parental care of its eggs and larvae. The timing of spawning events, and/or the rate of brood survival, may be influenced by fluctuations in the flood level, resulting in a non-unimodal distribution of size classes for the subsequent 1+ cohort.Os acarás-disco do gênero Symphysodon são peixes ornamentais comumente encontrados em lagos e florestas alagadas das planícies inundadas da Amazônia. Estes habitats são caracterizados por uma variação sazonal extrema na disponibilidade de alimento, abrigo e oxigênio dissolvido, e também pela densidade de predadores e parasitas. A maioria dos aspectos da biologia do acará-disco são influenciados por esta variabilidade de condições sazonais. Este artigo apresenta um estudo autoecológico de S. haraldi (até recentemente classificado como S. aequifasciatus da Amazônia Ocidental. Os acarás-disco alimentam-se predominantemente de perifiton, detritos
Maria do Socorro R. F. Cacho
Full Text Available The angel fish, Pterophyllum scalare is a cichlid native to the Amazon Basin of Brazil and is exported as an ornamental fish. In this study the importance of the experience and previous reproductive success of males in mate selection was investigated. In order to investigate reproductive experience, six pairs of males (experienced and inexperienced and six females were used. Males were placed in an aquarium, where one female was released. Mate selection was verified by the time spent by a female near one of the males. To evaluate reproductive success, six pairs of males were tested, each pair consisting of a successful male and an unsuccessful one. Again, time spent with one of the males was considered as an indication of preference by the female. Each female was then paired with an unsuccessful male and their reproductive success was assessed. Females preferred larger, aggressive, territorial and experienced males. Correlations between male aggressiveness, aeration and egg survival were significant. During larval care, male aggressiveness was significantly related to larvae survival. Furthermore, intrabucal care and larval survival showed significant correlations with care provided by the experienced, mated and isolated fish. Survival of offspring resulted from mating with experienced and inexperienced males showed significant differences. Correlations between time spent by females with successful males during reproduction and survival rate of eggs and larvae were significant. Females assess the capacity and willingness of males in investing efforts to raise the offspring through their courtship behavior. Experienced and successful males are preferred by females and thereby achieve greater reproductive success.O acará bandeira, Pterophyllum scalareé um ciclídeo nativo da Bacia Amazônica do Brasil, eé exportado como espécie ornamental. Neste estudo foi investigada a importância da experiência dos machos e do sucesso na reprodu
Full Text Available Theory suggests that living in large social groups with dynamic social interactions often favours the evolution of enhanced cognitive abilities. Studies of how animals assess their own contest ability commonly focus on a single cognitive task, and little is known about the diversity or co-occurrence of cognitive abilities in social species. We examined how a highly social cichlid fish Julidochromis transcriptus uses four major cognitive abilities in contest situations; direct experience, winner/loser effects, social eavesdropping and transitive inference (TI. We conducted experiments in which fish assessed the social status of rivals after either direct physical contests or observed contests. Individuals used direct information from a previous physical encounter to re-establish dominance without additional contact, but winner/loser effects were not observed. Social eavesdropping alone was ruled out, but we found that transitive reasoning was used to infer social dominance of other individuals of unknown status. Our results suggest that in stable hierarchical social groups, estimations of contest ability, based on individual recognition pathways such as TI and direct experience, are more prevalent than social eavesdropping or winner/loser effects. We suggest that advanced cognitive abilities might be widespread among highly social fishes, but have previously gone undetected.
Spreitzer, Maria Luise; Mautner, Selma; Makasa, Lawrence; Sturmbauer, Christian
With about 250 endemic species, Lake Tanganyika contains an extraordinarily diverse cichlid fish fauna, and thus represents an ideal model system for the study of pathways and processes of speciation. The Lamprologini form the most species-rich tribe in Lake Tanganyika comprising about 100 species in seven genera, most of which are endemic to the lake. They are territorial substrate-breeders and represent a monophyletic tribe. By combined analysis of population genetics and geometric morphome...
Full Text Available The approximately 700 species of cichlids found in Lake Victoria in East Africa are thought to have evolved over a short period of time, and they represent one of the largest known examples of adaptive radiation. To understand the processes that are driving this spectacular radiation, we must determine the present genetic structure of these species and elucidate how this structure relates to the ecological conditions that caused their adaptation. We analyzed the genetic structure of two pelagic and seven littoral species sampled from the southeast area of Lake Victoria using sequences from the mtDNA control region and 12 microsatellite loci as markers. Using a Bayesian model-based clustering method to analyze the microsatellite data, we separated these nine species into four groups: one group composed of pelagic species and another three groups composed mainly of rocky-shore species. Furthermore, we found significant levels of genetic variation between species within each group at both marker loci using analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA, although the nine species often shared mtDNA haplotypes. We also found significant levels of genetic variation between populations within species. These results suggest that initial groupings, some of which appear to have been related to habitat differences, as well as divergence between species within groups took place among the cichlid species of Lake Victoria.
Takeuchi, Yuichi; Hori, Michio; Tada, Shinya; Oda, Yoichi
The scale-eating cichlid Perissodus microlepis with asymmetric mouth is an attractive model of behavioral laterality: each adult tears off scales from prey fishes' left or right flanks according to the direction in which its mouth is skewed. To investigate the development of behavioral laterality and mouth asymmetry, we analyzed stomach contents and lower jaw-bone asymmetry of various-sized P. microlepis (22 ≤ SLLake Tanganyika. The shapes of the pored scales found in each specimen's stomach indicated its attack side preference. Early-juvenile specimens (SL<45 mm) feeding mainly on zooplankton exhibited slight but significant mouth asymmetry. As the fish acquired scale-eating (45 mm ≤ SL), attack side preference was gradually strengthened, as was mouth asymmetry. Among size-matched individuals, those with more skewed mouths ate more scales. These findings show that behavioral laterality in scale-eating P. microlepis is established in association with development of mouth asymmetry which precedes the behavioral acquisition, and that this synergistic interaction between physical and behavioral literalities may contribute to efficient scale-eating. PMID:26808293
Full Text Available The scale-eating cichlid Perissodus microlepis with asymmetric mouth is an attractive model of behavioral laterality: each adult tears off scales from prey fishes' left or right flanks according to the direction in which its mouth is skewed. To investigate the development of behavioral laterality and mouth asymmetry, we analyzed stomach contents and lower jaw-bone asymmetry of various-sized P. microlepis (22 ≤ SL<115 mm sampled in Lake Tanganyika. The shapes of the pored scales found in each specimen's stomach indicated its attack side preference. Early-juvenile specimens (SL<45 mm feeding mainly on zooplankton exhibited slight but significant mouth asymmetry. As the fish acquired scale-eating (45 mm ≤ SL, attack side preference was gradually strengthened, as was mouth asymmetry. Among size-matched individuals, those with more skewed mouths ate more scales. These findings show that behavioral laterality in scale-eating P. microlepis is established in association with development of mouth asymmetry which precedes the behavioral acquisition, and that this synergistic interaction between physical and behavioral literalities may contribute to efficient scale-eating.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Diverse plant and animal species have B chromosomes, also known as accessory, extra or supernumerary chromosomes. Despite being widely distributed among different taxa, the genomic nature and genetic behavior of B chromosomes are still poorly understood. Results In this study we describe the occurrence of B chromosomes in the African cichlid fish Haplochromis obliquidens. One or two large B chromosome(s occurring in 39.6% of the analyzed individuals (both male and female were identified. To better characterize the karyotype and assess the nature of the B chromosomes, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH was performed using probes for telomeric DNA repeats, 18S and 5S rRNA genes, SATA centromeric satellites, and bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs enriched in repeated DNA sequences. The B chromosomes are enriched in repeated DNAs, especially non-active 18S rRNA gene-like sequences. Conclusion Our results suggest that the B chromosome could have originated from rDNA bearing subtelo/acrocentric A chromosomes through formation of an isochromosome, or by accumulation of repeated DNAs and rRNA gene-like sequences in a small proto-B chromosome derived from the A complement.
Lee, Hyuk Je; Heim, Valentin; Meyer, Axel
The scale-eating cichlid fish, Perissodus microlepis, from Lake Tanganyika are a well-known example of an asymmetry dimorphism because the mouth/head is either left-bending or right-bending. However, how strongly its pronounced morphological laterality is affected by genetic and environmental factors remains unclear. Using quantitative assessments of mouth asymmetry, we investigated its origin by estimating narrow-sense heritability (h (2) ) using midparent-offspring regression. The heritability estimates [field estimate: h (2) = 0.22 ± 0.06, P = 0.013; laboratory estimate: h (2) = 0.18 ± 0.05, P = 0.004] suggest that although variation in laterality has some additive genetic component, it is strongly environmentally influenced. Family-level association analyses of a putative microsatellite marker that was claimed to be linked to gene(s) for laterality revealed no association of this locus with laterality. Moreover, the observed phenotype frequencies in offspring from parents of different phenotype combinations were not consistent with a previously suggested single-locus two-allele model, but they neither were able to reject with confidence a random asymmetry model. These results reconcile the disputed mechanisms for this textbook case of mouth asymmetry where both genetic and environmental factors contribute to this remarkable case of morphological asymmetry. PMID:26664678
Takeuchi, Yuichi; Hori, Michio; Tada, Shinya; Oda, Yoichi
The scale-eating cichlid Perissodus microlepis with asymmetric mouth is an attractive model of behavioral laterality: each adult tears off scales from prey fishes’ left or right flanks according to the direction in which its mouth is skewed. To investigate the development of behavioral laterality and mouth asymmetry, we analyzed stomach contents and lower jaw-bone asymmetry of various-sized P. microlepis (22≤SL<115mm) sampled in Lake Tanganyika. The shapes of the pored scales found in each specimen’s stomach indicated its attack side preference. Early-juvenile specimens (SL<45mm) feeding mainly on zooplankton exhibited slight but significant mouth asymmetry. As the fish acquired scale-eating (45mm≤SL), attack side preference was gradually strengthened, as was mouth asymmetry. Among size-matched individuals, those with more skewed mouths ate more scales. These findings show that behavioral laterality in scale-eating P. microlepis is established in association with development of mouth asymmetry which precedes the behavioral acquisition, and that this synergistic interaction between physical and behavioral literalities may contribute to efficient scale-eating. PMID:26808293
Full Text Available Abstract Background Studies addressing the adaptive significance of female ornamentation have gained ground recently. However, the expression of female ornaments in relation to body size, known as trait allometry, still remains unexplored. Here, we investigated the allometry of a conspicuous female ornament in Pelvicachromis taeniatus, a biparental cichlid that shows mutual mate choice and ornamentation. Females feature an eye-catching pelvic fin greatly differing from that of males. Results We show that allometry of the female pelvic fin is scaled more positively in comparison to other fins. The pelvic fin exhibits isometry, whereas the other fins (except the caudal fin show negative allometry. The size of the pelvic fin might be exaggerated by male choice because males prefer female stimuli that show a larger extension of the trait. Female pelvic fin size is correlated with individual condition, suggesting that males can assess direct and indirect benefits. Conclusions The absence of positive ornament allometry might be a result of sexual selection constricted by natural selection: fins are related to locomotion and thus may be subject to viability selection. Our study provides evidence that male mate choice might scale the expression of a female sexual ornament, and therefore has implications for the understanding of the relationship of female sexual traits with body size in species with conventional sex-roles.
Anken, R H; Ibsch, M; Breuer, J; Rahmann, H
The amounts of calcium and strontium were measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) in saccular and utricular inner ear otoliths (sagittae and lapilli, respectively) of developing cichlid fish. These fish had been maintained for 22 days at 3-g hypergravity conditions within a centrifuge. During this time-span, the animals completed their ontogenetic development from hatch to the free-swimming stage. Neither the morphogenetic development nor the timely onset and gain of performance of the swimming behaviour was impaired by the experimental conditions. Experimental and control animals also did not differ concerning their size (total length). ICP-MS revealed that the otoliths contained significantly less calcium (in microg/otolith) after hyper-g exposure compared to parallelly raised 1-g control specimens (lapilli: 0.74+/-0.21 vs. 1.16+/-0.41; sagittae: 2.09+/-0.49 vs. 2.76+/-0.47). The content of strontium (in microg/otolith: lapilli: 0.0044+/-0.0023 vs. 0.0022+/-0.0013; sagittae: 0.0094+/-0.0026 vs. 0.0081+/-0.0016) and, consequently, the Sr/Ca ratio (Sr/Cax100) was increased (lapilli: 0.607+/-0.267 vs. 0.201+/-0.12; sagittae: 0.439+/-0.093 vs. 0.301+/-0.086). Since the calcium content can be taken as a proxy for otolith weight, and because parallelly undertaken morphometric investigations revealed smaller otoliths (maximum radius and surface area) due to hyper-g exposure, the results suggest that the growth of otoliths at hyper-g is slowed down. Since the concentration of trace elements incorporated into otoliths is likely based on the composition of the respective protein matrix, our findings suggest that the protein metabolism is affected by hypergravity. PMID:11223398
Dalton, Brian E; Lu, Jessica; Leips, Jeff; Cronin, Thomas W; Carleton, Karen L
Critical behaviours such as predation and mate choice often depend on vision. Visual systems are sensitive to the spectrum of light in their environment, which can vary extensively both within and among habitats. Evolutionary changes in spectral sensitivity contribute to divergence and speciation. Spectral sensitivity of the retina is primarily determined by visual pigments, which are opsin proteins bound to a chromophore. We recently discovered that photoreceptors in different regions of the retina, which view objects against distinct environmental backgrounds, coexpress different pairs of opsins in an African cichlid fish, Metriaclima zebra. This coexpression tunes the sensitivity of the retinal regions to the corresponding backgrounds and may aid in detection of dark objects, such as predators. Although intraretinal regionalization of spectral sensitivity in many animals correlates with their light environments, it is unknown whether variation in the light environment induces developmentally plastic alterations of intraretinal sensitivity regions. Here, we demonstrate with fluorescent in situ hybridization and qPCR that the spectrum and angle of environmental light both influence the development of spectral sensitivity regions by altering the distribution and level of opsins across the retina. Normally, M. zebra coexpresses LWS opsin with RH2Aα opsin in double cones of the ventral but not the dorsal retina. However, when illuminated from below throughout development, adult M. zebra coexpressed LWS and RH2Aα in double cones both dorsally and ventrally. Thus, environmental background spectra alter the spectral sensitivity pattern that develops across the retina, potentially influencing behaviours and related evolutionary processes such as courtship and speciation. PMID:26175094
Hernán López-Fernández; Jessica Arbour; Stuart Willis; Crystal Watkins; Honeycutt, Rodney L.; Winemiller, Kirk O.
Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis...
Michaela Kerschbaumer; Christian Sturmbauer
Fishes of the family Cichlidae are famous for their spectacular species flocks and therefore constitute a model system for the study of the pathways of adaptive radiation. Their radiation is connected to trophic specialization, manifested in dentition, head morphology, and body shape. Geometric morphometric methods have been established as efficient tools to quantify such differences in overall body shape or in particular morphological structures and meanwhile found wide application in evolut...
Manousaki, Tereza; Hull, Pincelli M; Kusche, Henrik; Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Franchini, Paolo; Harrod, Chris; Elmer, Kathryn R; Meyer, Axel
The study of parallel evolution facilitates the discovery of common rules of diversification. Here, we examine the repeated evolution of thick lips in Midas cichlid fishes (the Amphilophus citrinellus species complex)-from two Great Lakes and two crater lakes in Nicaragua-to assess whether similar changes in ecology, phenotypic trophic traits and gene expression accompany parallel trait evolution. Using next-generation sequencing technology, we characterize transcriptome-wide differential gene expression in the lips of wild-caught sympatric thick- and thin-lipped cichlids from all four instances of repeated thick-lip evolution. Six genes (apolipoprotein D, myelin-associated glycoprotein precursor, four-and-a-half LIM domain protein 2, calpain-9, GTPase IMAP family member 8-like and one hypothetical protein) are significantly underexpressed in the thick-lipped morph across all four lakes. However, other aspects of lips' gene expression in sympatric morphs differ in a lake-specific pattern, including the magnitude of differentially expressed genes (97-510). Generally, fewer genes are differentially expressed among morphs in the younger crater lakes than in those from the older Great Lakes. Body shape, lower pharyngeal jaw size and shape, and stable isotopes (δ(13)C and δ(15)N) differ between all sympatric morphs, with the greatest differentiation in the Great Lake Nicaragua. Some ecological traits evolve in parallel (those related to foraging ecology; e.g. lip size, body and head shape) but others, somewhat surprisingly, do not (those related to diet and food processing; e.g. jaw size and shape, stable isotopes). Taken together, this case of parallelism among thick- and thin-lipped cichlids shows a mosaic pattern of parallel and nonparallel evolution. PMID:23057963
Kavembe, Geraldine D; Kautt, Andreas F; Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Meyer, Axel
Ecological diversification through divergent selection is thought to be a major force during the process of adaptive radiations. However, the large sizes and complexity of most radiations such as those of the cichlids in the African Great Lakes make it impossible to infer the exact evolutionary history of any population divergence event. The genus Alcolapia, a small cichlid lineage endemic to Lakes Magadi and Natron in East Africa, exhibits phenotypes similar to some of those found in cichlids of the radiations of the African Great Lakes. The simplicity within Alcolapia makes it an excellent model system to investigate ecological diversification and speciation. We used an integrated approach including population genomics based on RAD-seq data, geometric morphometrics and stable isotope analyses to investigate the eco-morphological diversification of tilapia in Lake Magadi and its satellite lake Little Magadi. Additionally, we reconstructed the demographic history of the species using coalescent simulations based on the joint site frequency spectrum. The population in Little Magadi has a characteristically upturned mouth-possibly an adaptation to feeding on prey from the water surface. Eco-morphological differences between populations within Lake Magadi are more subtle, but are consistent with known ecological differences between its lagoons such as high concentrations of nitrogen attributable to extensive guano deposits in Rest of Magadi relative to Fish Springs Lagoon. All populations diverged simultaneously only about 1100 generations ago. Differences in levels of gene flow between populations and the effective population sizes have likely resulted in the inferred heterogeneous patterns of genome-wide differentiation. PMID:26547282
Hodaňová,Lucie; Kalous, Lukáš; Musilová, Zuzana
Abstract A comparative cytogenetic analysis was carried out in five species of a monophyletic clade of neotropical Cichlasomatine cichlids, namely Cleithracara maronii Steindachner, 1881, Ivanacara adoketa (Kullander & Prada-Pedreros, 1993), Nannacara anomala Regan, 1905, N. aureocephalus Allgayer, 1983 and N. taenia Regan, 1912. Karyotypes and other chromosomal characteristics were revealed by CDD banding and mapped onto the phylogenetic hypothesis based on molecular analyses of four genes, ...
Verzijden, Machteld Nicolette
The great Lakes of East Africa are inhabited by a great number of haplochromine cichlid species, which form a diverse group in both ecology and nuptial coloration. The large number of sympatrically occuriring closely related species has raised questions about the underlying mechanism for reproductive isolation. In this thesis I describe experiments that test for the effects of early experience on their species assortative behaviour in the contexts of mate choice and male territorial interacti...
Comparisons of social cohesiveness were made between F1 convict cichlids derived from gonial germ cells which were exposed to 0, 250, 500, 750, 1000, or 2000 R of x-rays. The cohesiveness was determined by counting the distribution of each ten fish of every F1 group among 12 equal squares within a shallow test tank measuring 80 by 60 by 20 cm. While an increase in cohesiveness was detected in F1 males, as compared to the controls after irradiation with 500 R, the cohesiveness of F1 females decreased after 750 and 2000 R. The increase in male cohesiveness may be associated with a reduction of intermale aggressiveness as found in previous studies
Full Text Available Anthropogenic (man-made noise has been shown to have a negative impact on the behaviour and physiology of a range of terrestrial and aquatic animals. However, direct assessments of fitness consequences are rare. Here we examine the effect of additional noise on early life stages in the model cichlid fish, Neolamprologus pulcher. Many fishes use and produce sounds, they are crucial elements of aquatic ecosystems, and there is mounting evidence that they are vulnerable to anthropogenic noise; adult N. pulcher have recently been shown to change key behaviours during playback of motor boat noise. Using a split-brood design to eliminate potential genetic effects, we exposed half of the eggs and fry from each clutch to four weeks of playbacks of noise originally recorded from small motor boats with the other half acting as a control (receiving no noise playback. There was no significant effect of additional noise on hatching success or fry survival, length or weight at the end of the exposure period. Although care should be taken not to generalize these findings on a single species from a laboratory study, our data suggest that moderate noise increases do not necessarily have direct negative impacts on early-life survival and growth. Further studies on a range of species in natural conditions are urgently needed to inform conservation efforts and policy decisions about the consequences of anthropogenic noise.
Greenwood, Anna K.; Wark, Abigail R.; Fernald, Russell D.; Hofmann, Hans A.
Neuropeptides have widespread modulatory effects on behaviour and physiology and are associated with phenotypic transitions in a variety of animals. Arginine vasotocin (AVT) is implicated in mediating alternative male phenotypes in teleost fish, but the direction of the association differs among species, with either higher or lower AVT related to more territorial behaviour in different fishes. To clarify the complex relationship between AVT and alternative phenotype, we evaluated AVT expressi...
Lee, Hyuk Je; Heim, Valentin; Meyer, Axel
Alloparental care - care for unrelated young - is rare in animals, and its ecological or evolutionary advantages or, alternative maladaptive nature, remain unclear. We investigate alloparental care in the socially monogamous cichlid fish Perissodus microlepis from Lake Tanganyika that exhibits bi-parental care. In a genetic parentage analysis, we discovered a surprisingly high percentage of alloparental care represented by brood mixing, extra-pair paternity and extra-pair maternity in all broods that we investigated. The percentage of nondescendant juveniles of other parents, i.e., brood mixing, ranged from 5% to 57% (mean = 28%). The distribution of genetic parentage also suggests that this socially monogamous species has, in fact, polygamous mating system. The prevalence of genetically mixed broods can be best explained by two, not mutually exclusive hypotheses on farming-out and fostering behaviors. In the majority of broods, the sizes of the parents' own (descendant) offspring were significantly larger than those of the adopted (nondescendant) juveniles, supporting the 'selfish shepherd effect' hypothesis, i.e., that foster parents preferentially accept unrelated "smaller or not larger" young since this would tend to lower the predation risks for their own larger offspring. There was also a tendency for larger parents particularly mothers, more so than smaller parents, to care predominantly for their own offspring. Larger parents might be better at defending against cuckoldry and having foreign young dumped into their broods through farming-out behavior. This result might argue for maladaptive effects of allopatric care for the foster parents that only larger and possibly more experienced pairs can guard against. It needs to be determined why, apparently, the ability to recognize one's own young has not evolved in this species. PMID:27217943
Morandini, Leonel; Ramallo, Martín Roberto; Moreira, Renata Guimarães; Höcht, Christian; Somoza, Gustavo Manuel; Silva, Ana; Pandolfi, Matías
Reared animals for edible or ornamental purposes are frequently exposed to high aggression and stressful situations. These factors generally arise from conspecifics in densely breeding conditions. In vertebrates, serotonin (5-HT) has been postulated as a key neuromodulator and neurotransmitter involved in aggression and stress. The essential amino acid L-tryptophan (trp) is crucial for the synthesis of 5-HT, and so, leaves a gateway for indirectly augmenting brain 5-HT levels by means of a trp-enriched diet. The cichlid fish Cichlasoma dimerus, locally known as chanchita, is an autochthonous, potentially ornamental species and a fruitful laboratory model which behavior and reproduction has been studied over the last 15years. It presents complex social hierarchies, and great asymmetries between subordinate and dominant animals in respect to aggression, stress, and reproductive chance. The first aim of this work was to perform a morphological description of chanchita's brain serotonergic system, in both males and females. Then, we evaluated the effects of a trp-supplemented diet, given during 4weeks, on brain serotonergic activity, stress and sexual steroid hormones, and growth in isolated specimens. Results showed that chanchita's brain serotonergic system is composed of several populations of neurons located in three main areas: pretectum, hypothalamus and raphe, with no clear differences between males and females at a morphological level. Animals fed with trp-enriched diets exhibited higher forebrain serotonergic activity and a significant reduction in their relative cortisol levels, with no effects on sexual steroid plasma levels or growth parameters. Thus, this study points to food trp enrichment as a "neurodietary'' method for elevating brain serotonergic activity and decreasing stress, without affecting growth or sex steroid hormone levels. PMID:26449161
McGee, Matthew D; Faircloth, Brant C; Borstein, Samuel R; Zheng, Jimmy; Darrin Hulsey, C; Wainwright, Peter C; Alfaro, Michael E
Decoupling of the upper jaw bones--jaw kinesis--is a distinctive feature of the ray-finned fishes, but it is not clear how the innovation is related to the extraordinary diversity of feeding behaviours and feeding ecology in this group. We address this issue in a lineage of ray-finned fishes that is well known for its ecological and functional diversity--African rift lake cichlids. We sequenced ultraconserved elements to generate a phylogenomic tree of the Lake Tanganyika and Lake Malawi cichlid radiations. We filmed a diverse array of over 50 cichlid species capturing live prey and quantified the extent of jaw kinesis in the premaxillary and maxillary bones. Our combination of phylogenomic and kinematic data reveals a strong association between biting modes of feeding and reduced jaw kinesis, suggesting that the contrasting demands of biting and suction feeding have strongly influenced cranial evolution in both cichlid radiations. PMID:26763694
Weiss, Juliane D.; Cotterill, Fenton P. D.; Schliewen, Ulrich K
A long history of research focused on the East Africa cichlid radiations (EAR) revealed discrepancies between mtDNA and nuclear phylogenies, suggesting that interspecific hybridisation may have been significant during the radiation of these fishes. The approximately 250 cichlid species of Lake Tanganyika have their roots in a monophyletic African cichlid assemblage, but controversies remain about the precise phylogenetic origin and placement of different lineages and consequently about L. Tan...
Kazutaka Ota; Mitsuto Aibara; Masaya Morita; Satoshi Awata; Michio Hori; Masanori Kohda
Alternative reproductive tactics (ARTs) are found in several Lake Tanganyika shell-brooding cichlids. Field studies were conducted in the Wonzye population to examine reproductive ecology and ARTs in the Lake Tanganyika shell-brooding cichlid Neolamprologus brevis. We discovered that this fish occurred in both rocky- and sandy-bottom habitats, but in rocky habitats, brood-caring females exclusively occurred in shell-patches that another cichlid species created. All N. brevis of both sexes in ...
Won, Yong-jin; Sivasundar, Arjun; Wang, Yong; Hey, Jody
The cichlid fishes of Lake Malawi are famously diverse. However, phylogenetic and population genetic studies of their history have been difficult because of the great amount of genetic variation that is shared between species. We apply a recently developed method for fitting the “isolation with migration” divergence model to a data set of specially designed compound loci to develop portraits of cichlid species divergence. Outgroup sequences from a cichlid from Lake Tanganyika permit model par...
Sefc, Kristina M
Cichlid fishes of Lake Tanganyika display a variety of mating and parental care behaviors, including polygamous and monogamous mouthbrooding and substrate breeding, cooperative breeding, as well as various alternative reproductive tactics such as sneaking and piracy. Moreover, reproductive behaviors sometimes vary within species both in space and in time. Here, I survey reports on mating and parenting behaviors of Lake Tanganyika cichlid species and address the evolution of mating and parenta...
Schluessel, V; Kraniotakes, H; Bleckmann, H
Fish move in a three-dimensional environment in which it is important to discriminate between stimuli varying in colour, size, and shape. It is also advantageous to be able to recognize the same structures or individuals when presented from different angles, such as back to front or front to side. This study assessed visual discrimination abilities of rotated three-dimensional objects in eight individuals of Pseudotropheus sp. using various plastic animal models. All models were displayed in two choice experiments. After successful training, fish were presented in a range of transfer tests with objects rotated in the same plane and in space by 45° and 90° to the side or to the front. In one experiment, models were additionally rotated by 180°, i.e., shown back to front. Fish showed quick associative learning and with only one exception successfully solved and finished all experimental tasks. These results provide first evidence for form constancy in this species and in fish in general. Furthermore, Pseudotropheus seemed to be able to categorize stimuli; a range of turtle and frog models were recognized independently of colour and minor shape variations. Form constancy and categorization abilities may be important for behaviours such as foraging, recognition of predators, and conspecifics as well as for orienting within habitats or territories. PMID:23982620
Khidr, Bothaina M; Mekkawy, Imam A A; Harabawy, Ahmed S A; Ohaida, Abdel Salam M I
The adverse impacts of heavy metals on fish liver were evident with great variability among organs and species. The present study deals with the histological changes of the hepatocytes of the Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, following exposure to 2.5, 5, 10 ppm of lead nitrate for 1, 2, 3, 4 weeks. The present results revealed that lead nitrate exerts some histological effects on the hepatic tissue after exposure to the first concentration in the form of dilatation and congestion of the blood vessels, vacuolation of hepatic cells, proliferation of connective tissue and hepatic necrosis. Leucocyte aggregation-mostly lymphatic in nature-was seen infiltrating hepatic tissue. These alterations became more pronounced in liver of fishes exposed to second concentrations indicating more progressive signs of necrosis. The presence of eosinophilic oedematous areas surrounding some blood vessels was also observed. Finally, at the third concentration, in addition to the above alterations, melanomacrophages, which store lipofuscin at the site of necrosis, were observed. These histological results imply that the fish liver may serve as a target organ for the toxicity of sublethal concentrations of lead nitrate. PMID:24205754
M. Egas; Seehausen, O.; Mrosso, H D J; D. A. Joyce; Konijnendijk, N.
We examined genetic structure among five species of Lake Victoria haplochromine cichlids in four island communities, using a full factorial sampling design that compared genetic differentiation between pairs of species and populations of varying morphological similarity and geographical proximity. We found that allopatric conspecific populations were on average significantly more strongly differentiated than sympatric heterospecific populations of morphologically similar species. Allopatric h...
Grant E. BROWN, Christopher D. JACKSON, Patrick H. MALKA,Élisa JACQUES, Marc-Andre COUTURIER
Full Text Available Freshwater vertebrate and invertebrate prey species commonly rely on chemosensory information, including non-injury released disturbance cues, to assess local predation threats. We conducted laboratory studies to (1 determine if urea can function as a disturbance cue in juvenile convict cichlids and rainbow trout and (2 determine if the background level of urea influences the behavioral response to a subsequent pulse of urea (‘background noise’ hypothesis. In the first series of trials, juvenile cichlids and trout were exposed to urea at varying concentrations (0 to 0.5 mg L-1 for cichlids and 0 to 1.0 mg L-1 for trout. Our results suggest that both cichilds and trout exhibited functionally similar responses to urea and conspecific disturbance cues and that increasing the concentration of urea results in an increase intensity of antipredator behaviour. In the second series of trials, we pre-exposed cichlids or trout to intermediate or high concentrations of urea (or a distilled water control and then tested for the response to a second pulse of urea at at intermediate or high concentrations (versus a distilled water control. Our results demonstrate that pre-exposure to urea reduces or eliminates the response to a second pulse of urea, supporting the background noise hypothesis. Together, our results suggest that pulses of urea, released by disturbed or stressed individuals, may function as an early warning signal in freshwater prey species [Current Zoology 58 (2: 250–259 , 2012].
Keller-Costa, Tina; Canário, Adelino V M; Hubbard, Peter C
The family Cichlidae is well-known for pair-formation, parental care, territoriality, elaborate courtship and social organization. Do cichlids use chemical communication to mediate any of these behaviours? Early studies suggest that parent cichlids can discriminate between conspecific and heterospecific wrigglers (but not eggs) using olfactory cues. Some species are able to discriminate between their own brood and other conspecific broods based on olfaction. The young recognise conspecific adults (although not necessarily their parents) through the odorants they release. In both scenarios, protection of the young from predation is the likely selective force. Some male cichlids use urinary pheromones during courtship and spawning to attract females and induce ovulation. Females--in their turn--may base their mate-choice in part on assessment of those self-same pheromones. The same pheromonal system may be involved in establishing and maintaining the social hierarchies in lek-breeding cichlids. Individual recognition is also mediated by chemical communication. Finally, there is ample behavioural evidence that cichlids--like ostariophysan fish--release alarm cues that alert conspecifics to predation danger. Although the effects of these cues may be similar (e.g., increased shelter use, tighter schooling), they are different substances which remain to be identified. Cichlids, then, use chemical communication associated with many different behaviours. However, given the diversity of cichlids, little is known about the mechanisms of chemical communication or the chemical identity of the cues involved. The aim of this mini-review is to persuade those working with cichlids to consider the involvement of chemical communication, and those working in chemical communication to consider using cichlids. PMID:25622908
D. Wilhelm Filho
Full Text Available The livers of Geophagus brasiliensis collected from both a non-polluted site and a polluted site were analyzed for different antioxidant defenses, O2 consumption, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance (TBARS levels, and histological damage. Compared to controls (116.6 ± 26.1 nmol g-1, TBARS levels were enhanced at the polluted site (284.2 ± 25.6 nmol g-1, as also was oxygen consumption (86.6 ± 11.3 and 128.5 ± 9.8 µmol O2 min-1 g-1, respectively. With respect to enzymatic antioxidants, increased catalase activities (8.7 ± 1.3 and 29.2 ± 2.4 mmol min-1 g-1, respectively, unchanged superoxide dismutase activities (767.2 ± 113.3 and 563.3 ± 70.2 U g-1, respectively, and diminished glutathione S-transferase activities (29.0 ± 3.2 and 14.9 ± 3.2 µmol min-1 g-1, respectively were detected. Reduced glutathione (1.91 ± 0.17 and 1.37 ± 0.25 mM, respectively, oxidized glutathione (1.50 ± 0.20 and 0.73 ± 0.17 mM, respectively, and total glutathione (3.40 ± 0.26 and 2.07 ± 0.27 mM, respectively concentrations were also below control values at the polluted site. Nevertheless, the observed ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase activities (1.34 ± 0.11 and 16.7 ± 0.21 pmol min-1 mg-1, respectively showed enhanced values at the polluted site. The main histological damage observed in the hepatocytes from fish collected at the polluted site was characterized by heavy lipid infiltration. Fish collected at the end of spring showed higher O2 consumption, higher superoxide dismutase and glutathione S-transferase activities, and higher total and oxidized glutathione concentrations compared to the beginning of autumn. No seasonal changes were observed in catalase activities, glutathione or TBARS levels. Fish chronically exposed to relatively high pollution levels seem to be unable to set up adequate antioxidant defenses, probably due to severe injury to their hepatocytes. The higher antioxidant defenses found at the end of spring are probably related to the
Kautt, Andreas F; Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Torres-Dowdall, Julian; Meyer, Axel
Understanding how speciation can occur without geographic isolation remains a central objective in evolutionary biology. Generally, some form of disruptive selection and assortative mating are necessary for sympatric speciation to occur. Disruptive selection can arise from intraspecific competition for resources. If this competition leads to the differential use of habitats and variation in relevant traits is genetically determined, then assortative mating can be an automatic consequence (i.e., habitat isolation). In this study, we caught Midas cichlid fish from the limnetic (middle of the lake) and benthic (shore) habitats of Crater Lake Asososca Managua to test whether some of the necessary conditions for sympatric speciation due to intraspecific competition and habitat isolation are given. Lake As. Managua is very small (<900 m in diameter), extremely young (maximally 1245 years of age), and completely isolated. It is inhabited by, probably, only a single endemic species of Midas cichlids, Amphilophus tolteca. We found that fish from the limnetic habitat were more elongated than fish collected from the benthic habitat, as would be predicted from ecomorphological considerations. Stable isotope analyses confirmed that the former also exhibit a more limnetic lifestyle than the latter. Furthermore, split-brood design experiments in the laboratory suggest that phenotypic plasticity is unlikely to explain much of the observed differences in body elongation that we observed in the field. Yet, neutral markers (microsatellites) did not reveal any genetic clustering in the population. Interestingly, demographic inferences based on RAD-seq data suggest that the apparent lack of genetic differentiation at neutral markers could simply be due to a lack of time, as intraspecific competition may only have begun a few hundred generations ago. PMID:27551387
Grant E. BROWN; Christopher D. JACKSON; Patrick H. MALKA; (E)lisa JACQUES; Marc-Andre COUTURIER
Freshwater vertebrate and invertebrate prey species commonly rely on chemosensory information,including non-injury released disturbance cues,to assess local predation threats.We conducted laboratory studies to (1) determine if urea can function as a disturbance cue in juvenile convict cichlids and rainbow trout and (2) determine if the background level of urea influences the behavioral response to a subsequent pulse of urea ('background noise' hypothesis).In the first series of trials,juvenile cichlids and trout were exposed to urea at varying concentrations (0 to 0.5 mg L-1 for cichlids and 0 to 1.0 mg L-1 for trout).Our results suggest that both cichilds and trout exhibited functionally similar responses to urea and conspecific disturbance cues and that increasing the concentration of urea results in an increase intensity of antipredator behaviour.In the second series of trials,we pre-exposed cichlids or trout to intermediate or high concentrations of urea (or a distilled water control) and then tested for the response to a second pulse of urea at at intermediate or high concentrations (versus a distilled water control).Our results demonstrate that pre-exposure to urea reduces or eliminates the response to a second pulse of urea,supporting the background noise hypothesis.Together,our results suggest that pulses of urea,released by disturbed or stressed individuals,may function as an early warning signal in freshwater prey species [Current Zoology 58 (2):250-259,2012].
Vanhove, Maarten p. m.; Antoine Pariselle; Maarten Van Steenberge; Raeymaekers, Joost A. M.; Hablützel, Pascal I; Céline Gillardin; Bart Hellemans; Floris C Breman; Stephan Koblmüller; Christian Sturmbauer; Jos Snoeks; Filip A M Volckaert; Tine Huyse
The stunning diversity of cichlid fishes has greatly enhanced our understanding of speciation and radiation. Little is known about the evolution of cichlid parasites. Parasites are abundant components of biodiversity, whose diversity typically exceeds that of their hosts. In the first comprehensive phylogenetic parasitological analysis of a vertebrate radiation, we study monogenean parasites infecting tropheine cichlids from Lake Tanganyika. Monogeneans are flatworms usually infecting the bod...
Dijkstra, P. D.; Wiegertjes, G.F.; Forlenza, M.; van der Sluijs, I.; Hofmann, H. A.; Metcalfe, N. B.; Groothuis, T. G. G.
Sexual selection on male coloration has been implicated in the evolution of colourful species flocks of East African cichlid fish. During adaptive radiations, animals diverge in multiple phenotypic traits, but the role of physiology has received limited attention. Here, we report how divergence in physiology may contribute to the stable coexistence of two hybridizing incipient species of cichlid fish from Lake Victoria. Males of Pundamilia nyererei (males are red) tend to defeat those of Pund...
Henning, Frederico; Renz, Adina Josepha; Fukamachi, Shoji; Meyer, Axel
Natural populations of the Midas cichlid species in several different crater lakes in Nicaragua exhibit a conspicuous color polymorphism. Most individuals are dark and the remaining have a gold coloration. The color morphs mate assortatively and sympatric population differentiation has been shown based on neutral molecular data. We investigated the color polymorphism using segregation analysis and a candidate gene approach. The segregation patterns observed in a mapping cross between a gold and a dark individual were consistent with a single dominant gene as a cause of the gold phenotype. This suggests that a simple genetic architecture underlies some of the speciation events in the Midas cichlids. We compared the expression levels of several candidate color genes Mc1r, Ednrb1, Slc45a2, and Tfap1a between the color morphs. Mc1r was found to be up regulated in the gold morph. Given its widespread association in color evolution and role on melanin synthesis, the Mc1r locus was further investigated using sequences derived from a genomic library. Comparative analysis revealed conserved synteny in relation to the majority of teleosts and highlighted several previously unidentified conserved non-coding elements (CNEs) in the upstream and downstream regions in the vicinity of Mc1r. The identification of the CNEs regions allowed the comparison of sequences from gold and dark specimens of natural populations. No polymorphisms were found between in the population sample and Mc1r showed no linkage to the gold phenotype in the mapping cross, demonstrating that it is not causally related to the color polymorphism in the Midas cichlid. PMID:20449580
Kristina M. Sefc
Full Text Available Cichlid fishes of Lake Tanganyika display a variety of mating and parental care behaviors, including polygamous and monogamous mouthbrooding and substrate breeding, cooperative breeding, as well as various alternative reproductive tactics such as sneaking and piracy. Moreover, reproductive behaviors sometimes vary within species both in space and in time. Here, I survey reports on mating and parenting behaviors of Lake Tanganyika cichlid species and address the evolution of mating and parental care patterns and sexual dimorphism. Notes on measures of sexual selection intensity and the difficulties of defining mating systems and estimating selection intensities at species level conclude the essay.
Seehausen, Ole; Koetsier, Egbert; Schneider, Maria Victoria; Chapman, Lauren J; Chapman, Colin A; Knight, Mairi E; Turner, George F; van Alphen, Jacques J M; Bills, Roger
Phylogenetic analyses based on mitochondrial (mt) DNA have indicated that the cichlid species flock of the Lake Victoria region is derived from a single ancestral species found in East African rivers, closely related to the ancestor of the Lake Malawi cichlid species flock. The Lake Victoria flock contains ten times less mtDNA variation than the Lake Malawi radiation, consistent with current estimates of the ages of the lakes. We present results of a phylogenetic investigation using nuclear (amplified fragment length polymorphism) markers and a wider coverage of riverine haplochromines. We demonstrate that the Lake Victoria-Edward flock is derived from the morphologically and ecologically diverse cichlid genus Thoracochromis from the Congo and Nile, rather than from the phenotypically conservative East African Astatotilapia. This implies that the ability to express much of the morphological diversity found in the species flock may by far pre-date the origin of the flock. Our data indicate that the nuclear diversity of the Lake Victoria-Edward species flock is similar to that of the Lake Malawi flock, indicating that the genetic diversity is considerably older than the 15 000 years that have passed since the lake began to refill. Most of this variation is manifested in trans-species polymorphisms, indicating very recent cladogenesis from a genetically very diverse founder stock. Our data do not confirm strict monophyly of either of the species flocks, but raise the possibility that these flocks have arisen from hybrid swarms. PMID:12590750
Raeymaekers, Joost; Hablützel, Pascal István; Grégoir, Arnout; Bamps, Jolien; Roose, Anna; Vanhove, Maarten; Van SteenBerge, Maarten; Pariselle, Antoine; Huyse, Tine; Snoeks, Jos; VOLCKAERT Filip
Background: Adaptation to different ecological environments is thought to drive ecological speciation. This phenomenon culminates in the radiations of cichlid fishes in the African Great Lakes. Multiple characteristic traits of cichlids, targeted by natural or sexual selection, are considered among the driving factors of these radiations. Parasites and pathogens have been suggested to initiate or accelerate speciation by triggering both natural and sexual selection. Three prerequisites for pa...
Full Text Available Fish demonstrate the greatest variety of parental care strategies within the animal kingdom. Fish parents seldom provision food for offspring, with some exceptions predominantly found in substrate-brooding Central American cichlids and mouth-brooding African cichlids. Here, we provide the first evidence of food provisioning in a substrate-brooding African cichlid Neolamprologus mondabu. This fish is a maternal substrate-brooding cichlid endemic to Lake Tanganyika, and feeds on benthic animals using unique techniques-individuals typically feed on the surface of sandy substrates, but also expose prey by digging up substrates with vigorous wriggling of their body and fins. Young also feed on benthos on the substrate surface, but only using the first technique. We observed that feeding induced by digging accounted for 30% of total feeding bouts in adult females, demonstrating that digging is an important foraging tactic. However, parental females fed less frequently after digging than non-parental females, although both females stayed in pits created by digging for approximately 30 s. Instead, young gathered in the pit and fed intensively, suggesting that parental females provision food for young by means of digging. We tested this hypothesis by comparing the feeding frequency of young before and after digging that was simulated by hand, and observed that young doubled their feeding frequency after the simulated digging. This suggests that parental females engage in digging to uncover food items that are otherwise unavailable to young, and provision food for them at the expense of their own foraging. This behavior was similar to what has been observed in Central American cichlids.
Anderson, Caleb; Werdenig, Alexandra; Koblmüller, Stephan; Sefc, Kristina M
Mating system variability is known to exist between and within species, often due to environmental influences. An open question is whether, vice versa, similar environmental conditions entail congruent mating behavior, for example in terms of multiple paternity, in species or populations sharing largely comparable breeding modes. This study employed microsatellite markers to investigate the incidence of multiple paternity in Cyprichromis coloratus and Cyprichromis leptosoma, two sympatric, closely related, mouthbrooding Lake Tanganyika cichlids with similar ecological and behavioral characteristics including the formation of open-water schools. Mouthbrooding females of both species were collected from the same mixed-species breeding school at the same time, minimizing environmental variation during courtship and mating. In C. coloratus, four of 12 broods had more than one sire, with a mean of 1.33 reconstructed sires per brood. C. leptosoma exhibited multiple paternity in 18 of 22 broods, with a mean of 2.59 or 2.86 reconstructed sires per brood according to the programs gerud and colony, respectively. In addition, two broods were found to contain offspring transplanted from another brood. There was no significant difference in brood size between species, but mean sire number did differ significantly. Hence, substantial similarity in reproductive behavior along with shared environmental conditions during courtship and spawning did not lead to equal rates of polyandry or sneaking in the two species. PMID:26811772
Magalhaes, Isabel S; Ornelas-Garcıa, Claudia Patricia; Leal-Cardin, Mariana; Ramírez, Tania; Barluenga, Marta
Understanding the origin of biodiversity requires knowledge on the evolutionary processes that drive divergence and speciation, as well as on the processes constraining it. Intraspecific polymorphisms can provide insight into the mechanisms that generate and maintain phenotypic, behavioural and life history diversification, and can help us understand not only the processes that lead to speciation but also the processes that prevent local fixation of morphs. The 'desert cichlid' Herichtys minckleyi is a highly polymorphic species endemic to a biodiversity hotspot in northern Mexico, the Cuatro Ciénegas valley. This species is polymorphic in body shape and trophic apparatus, and eco-morphotypes coexist in small spring-fed lagoons across the valley. We investigated the genetic structure of these polymorphisms and their phylogeographic history by analysing the entire control region of the mitochondrial DNA and 10 nuclear microsatellite markers in several populations from different sites and morphs. We found two very divergent mitochondrial lineages that most likely predate the closing of the valley and are not associated with morphotypes or sites. One of these lineages is also found in the sister species Herichthys cyanoguttatus. Data from neutral microsatellite markers suggest that most lagoons or drainages constitute their own genetic cluster with sympatric eco-morphotypes forming panmictic populations. Alternative mechanisms such as phenotypic plasticity and a few loci controlled traits provide possible explanations for the sympatric coexistence of discrete nonoverlapping eco-morphotypes with apparent lack of barriers to gene flow within multiple lagoons and drainages. PMID:26175313
McGee, Matthew D; Borstein, Samuel R; Neches, Russell Y; Buescher, Heinz H; Seehausen, Ole; Wainwright, Peter C
Evolutionary innovations, traits that give species access to previously unoccupied niches, may promote speciation and adaptive radiation. Here, we show that such innovations can also result in competitive inferiority and extinction. We present evidence that the modified pharyngeal jaws of cichlid fishes and several marine fish lineages, a classic example of evolutionary innovation, are not universally beneficial. A large-scale analysis of dietary evolution across marine fish lineages reveals that the innovation compromises access to energy-rich predator niches. We show that this competitive inferiority shaped the adaptive radiation of cichlids in Lake Tanganyika and played a pivotal and previously unrecognized role in the mass extinction of cichlid fishes in Lake Victoria after Nile perch invasion. PMID:26612951
Inke van der SLUIJS; Peter D.DIJKSTRA; Charlotte M.LINDEYER; Bertanne VISSER; Alan M.SMITH; Ton G.G.GROOTHUIS; Jacques J.M.van ALPHEN
Both inter-and intrasexual selection have been implicated in the origin and maintenance of species-rich taxa with diverse sexual traits.Simultaneous disruptive selection by female mate choice and male-male competition can,in theory,lead to speciation without geographical isolation if both act on the same male trait.Female mate choice can generate discontinuities in gene flow,while male-male competition can generate negative frequency-dependent selection stabilizing the male trait polymorphism.Speciation may be facilitated when mating preference and/or aggression bias are physically linked to the trait they operate on.We tested for genetic associations among female mating preference,male aggression bias and male coloration in the Lake Victoria cichlid Pundamilia.We crossed females from a phenotypically variable population with males from both extreme ends of the phenotype distribution in the same population (blue or red).Male offspring of a red sire were significantly redder than males of a blue sire,indicating that intra-population variation in male coloration is heritable.We tested mating preferences of female offspring and aggression biases of male offspring using binary choice tests.There was no evidence for associations at the family level between female mating preferences and coloration of sires,but dam identity had a significant effect on female mate preference.Sons of the red sire directed significantly more aggression to red than blue males,whereas sons of the blue sire did not show any bias.There was a positive correlation among individuals between male aggression bias and body coloration,possibly due to pleiotropy or physical linkage,which could facilitate the maintenance of color polymorphism.
Julie M Butler
Full Text Available Fishes use multimodal signals during both inter- and intra-sexual displays to convey information about their sex, reproductive state, and social status. These complex behavioral displays can include visual, auditory, olfactory, tactile, and hydrodynamic signals, and the relative role of each sensory channel in these complex multi-sensory interactions is a common focus of neuroethology. The mechanosensory lateral line system of fishes detects near-body water movements and is implicated in a variety of behaviors including schooling, rheotaxis, social communication, and prey detection. Cobalt chloride is commonly used to chemically ablate lateral line neuromasts, thereby eliminating water-movement cues to test for mechanosensory-mediated behavioral functions. However, cobalt acts as a nonspecific calcium channel antagonist and could potentially disrupt function of all superficially located sensory receptor cells, including those for chemosensing. Here, we examined whether CoCl2 treatment used to ablate the lateral line system also impairs olfaction in three freshwater fishes, the African cichlid fish Astatotilapia burtoni, goldfish Carassius auratus, and the Mexican blind cavefish Astyanax mexicanus. To examine the impact of CoCl2 on the activity of peripheral receptors, we quantified DASPEI fluorescence intensity of the olfactory epithelium from fish exposed to control and CoCl2 solutions. In addition, we examined brain activation in olfactory processing regions of A. burtoni immersed in either control or cobalt solutions. All three species exposed to CoCl2 had decreased DASPEI staining of the olfactory epithelium, and in A. burtoni, cobalt treatment caused reduced neural activation in olfactory processing regions of the brain. To our knowledge this is the first empirical evidence demonstrating that the same CoCl2 treatment used to ablate the lateral line system also impairs olfactory function. These data have important implications for the use of
Le Pabic, Pierre; Cooper, W. James; Schilling, Thomas F.
Background Cichlid fishes from the Rift Lakes of East Africa have undergone the most spectacular adaptive radiations in vertebrate history. Eco-morphological adaptations in lakes Victoria, Malawi and Tanganyika have resulted in a vast array of skull shapes and sizes, yet primary axes of morphological variation are conserved in all three radiations, prominently including the size of the preorbital region of the skull. This conserved pattern suggests that development may constrain the trajector...
O’Quin Kelly E
Full Text Available Abstract Background Phenotypic evolution may occur through mutations that affect either the structure or expression of protein-coding genes. Although the evolution of color vision has historically been attributed to structural mutations within the opsin genes, recent research has shown that opsin regulatory mutations can also tune photoreceptor sensitivity and color vision. Visual sensitivity in African cichlid fishes varies as a result of the differential expression of seven opsin genes. We crossed cichlid species that express different opsin gene sets and scanned their genome for expression Quantitative Trait Loci (eQTL responsible for these differences. Our results shed light on the role that different structural, cis-, and trans-regulatory mutations play in the evolution of color vision. Results We identified 11 eQTL that contribute to the divergent expression of five opsin genes. On three linkage groups, several eQTL formed regulatory “hotspots” associated with the expression of multiple opsins. Importantly, however, the majority of the eQTL we identified (8/11 or 73% occur on linkage groups located trans to the opsin genes, suggesting that cichlid color vision has evolved primarily via trans-regulatory divergence. By modeling the impact of just two of these trans-regulatory eQTL, we show that opsin regulatory mutations can alter cichlid photoreceptor sensitivity and color vision at least as much as opsin structural mutations can. Conclusions Combined with previous work, we demonstrate that the evolution of cichlid color vision results from the interplay of structural, cis-, and especially trans-regulatory loci. Although there are numerous examples of structural and cis-regulatory mutations that contribute to phenotypic evolution, our results suggest that trans-regulatory mutations could contribute to phenotypic divergence more commonly than previously expected, especially in systems like color vision, where compensatory changes in the
Musilová, Zuzana; Kalous, L.; Petrtýl, M.; Chaloupková, P.
Roč. 8, č. 5 (2013). E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z5045916 Keywords : FRESH-WATER FISHES * CENTRAL-AFRICA * EVOLUTION Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.534, year: 2013
Weigele, Jochen; Franz-Odendaal, Tamara A; Hilbig, Reinhard
The fish ear stones (otoliths) consist mainly of calcium carbonate and have lower amounts of a proteinous matrix. This matrix consists of macromolecules, which directly control the biomineralization process. We analyzed the composition of this proteinous matrix by mass spectrometry in a shotgun approach. For this purpose, an enhanced protein purification technique was developed that excludes any potential contamination of proteins from body fluids. Using this method we identified eight proteins in the inner ear of Oreochromis mossambicus. These include the common otolith matrix proteins (OMP-1, otolin-1, neuroserpin, SPARC and otoconin), and three proteins (alpha tectorin, otogelin and transferrin) not previously localized to the otoliths. Moreover, we were able to exclude the occurrence of two matrix proteins (starmaker and pre-cerebellin-like protein) known from other fish species. In further analyses, we show that the absence of the OMP starmaker corresponds to calcitic otoliths and that pre-cerebellin-like protein is not present at any stage during the development of the otoliths of the inner ear. This study shows O. mossambicus does not have all of the known otolith proteins indicating that the matrix proteins in the inner ear of fish are not the same across species. Further functional studies of the novel proteins we identified during otolith development are required. PMID:26559654
Stefanie B. R. Penk
Full Text Available African freshwater cichlids (Cichlidae: Pseudocrenilabrinae are well known for their exceptionally great diversity and their capability of rapid speciation as well as diverse adaptations. The extant Pseudocrenilabrinae can be grouped into 27 tribes, with more than 2000 species harbored in the Great Lakes and surrounding water bodies of the East African Rift System. However, this unique diversity is not reflected in the fossil record because fossil cichlids were predominantly reported based on isolated teeth and bones. Moreover, the few articulated specimens that are known have not been analyzed sufficiently with regard to their systematic position due to lack of comparative material. Here we present a new extraordinarily well-preserved cichlid fish fossil from the Middle Miocene (c. 12.5 Ma Lagerstaette Kabchore, which was recovered during recent fieldwork in the Tugen Hills (Baringo County, Central Kenya Rift. Based on the evidence of tricuspid teeth, the Kabchore fossil can be assigned to the subclade of the Haplotilapiines within the Pseudocrenilabrinae. The multivariate analysis of a large meristic data set, derived from 1014 extant specimens (encompassing all main lineages of Haplotilapiines and usage of available osteological data suggest that this fossil is most likely related to one of the three haplotilapiine tribes Tilapiini, Haplochromini or Oreochromini. Moreover, the fossil specimen closely resembles the extinct cichlid Oreochromis martyni (Van Couvering, 1982, previously described as species of Sarotherodon from the Middle Miocene alkaline Kapkiamu Lake in the Tugen Hills. The analysis of the greatly preserved fossil fish specimen from Kabchore definitely supplements the fragmentary fossil record of Africa’s Cichlidae and will afford new insights into its evolutionary history. We also expect that this fossil will be useful as calibration point for new divergence-time estimates.
Albertson R Craig; Stewart Thomas A
Abstract Background While bilaterality is a defining characteristic of triploblastic animals, several assemblages have managed to break this symmetry in order to exploit the adaptive peaks garnered through the lateralization of behaviour or morphology. One striking example of an evolved asymmetry in vertebrates comes from a group of scale-eating cichlid fishes from Lake Tanganyika. Members of the Perissodini tribe of cichlid fishes have evolved dental and craniofacial asymmetries in order to ...
Patrick D. Danley
Full Text Available The cichlid fishes of the East African Great Lakes are the largest extant vertebrate radiation identified to date. These lakes and their surrounding waters support over 2,000 species of cichlid fish, many of which are descended from a single common ancestor within the past 10 Ma. The extraordinary East African cichlid diversity is intricately linked to the highly variable geologic and paleoclimatic history of this region. Greater than 10 Ma, the western arm of the East African rift system began to separate, thereby creating a series of rift basins that would come to contain several water bodies, including the extremely deep Lakes Tanganyika and Malawi. Uplifting associated with this rifting backponded many rivers and created the extremely large, but shallow Lake Victoria. Since their creation, the size, shape, and existence of these lakes have changed dramatically which has, in turn, significantly influenced the evolutionary history of the lakes' cichlids. This paper reviews the geologic history and paleoclimate of the East African Great Lakes and the impact of these forces on the region's endemic cichlid flocks.
Raoni Rosa Rodrigues; Lucélia Nobre Carvalho; Jansen Zuanon; Kleber Del-Claro
Animal coloration has many functions, and fishes are noted among vertebrates for presenting a wide variety of color patterns. Although in marine fishes the relationship between body coloration and behavioral context is well documented, there's not much information about freshwater fishes. Here we describe color patterns displayed by the dwarf cichlid Apistogramma hippolytae and suggest that these patterns are dependent on different social and behavioral settings. Field observations were condu...
Arbour, Jessica Hilary; López-Fernández, Hernán
Adaptive radiations have been hypothesized to contribute broadly to the diversity of organisms. Models of adaptive radiation predict that ecological opportunity and ecological release, the availability of empty ecological niches and the response by adapting lineages to occupy them, respectively, drive patterns of phenotypic and lineage diversification. Adaptive radiations driven by 'ecological opportunity' are well established in island systems; it is less clear if ecological opportunity influences continent-wide diversification. We use Neotropical cichlid fishes to test if variation in rates of functional evolution is consistent with changing ecological opportunity. Across a functional morphological axis associated with ram-suction feeding traits, evolutionary rates declined through time as lineages diversified in South America. Evolutionary rates of ram-suction functional morphology also appear to have accelerated as cichlids colonized Central America and encountered renewed opportunity. Our results suggest that ecological opportunity may play an important role in shaping patterns of morphological diversity of even broadly distributed lineages like Neotropical cichlids. PMID:27512144
Won, Yong-Jin; Sivasundar, Arjun; Wang, Yong; Hey, Jody
The cichlid fishes of Lake Malawi are famously diverse. However, phylogenetic and population genetic studies of their history have been difficult because of the great amount of genetic variation that is shared between species. We apply a recently developed method for fitting the "isolation with migration" divergence model to a data set of specially designed compound loci to develop portraits of cichlid species divergence. Outgroup sequences from a cichlid from Lake Tanganyika permit model parameter estimates in units of years and effective population sizes. Estimated speciation times range from 1,000 to 17,000 years for species in the genus Tropheops. These exceptionally recent dates suggest that Malawi cichlids as a group experience a very active and dynamic diversification process. Current effective population size estimates range form 2,000 to near 40,000, and to >120,000 for estimates of ancestral population sizes. It appears that very recent speciation and gene flow are among the reasons why it has been difficult to discern the phylogenetic history of Malawi cichlids. PMID:15851665
Faunce, Craig H.; Patterson, Heather M.; Lorenz, Jerome J.
Mayan cichlids (Cichlasoma urophthalmus) were collected monthly from March 1996 to October 1997 with hook-and-line gear at Taylor River, Florida, an area within the Crocodile Sanctuary of Everglades National Park, where human activities such as fishing are prohibited. Fish were aged by examining thin-sectioned otoliths, and past size-at-age information was generated by using back-calculation techniques. Marginal increment analysis showed that opaque growth zones were annuli deposited between ...
Weiss, Juliane D; Cotterill, Fenton P D; Schliewen, Ulrich K
A long history of research focused on the East Africa cichlid radiations (EAR) revealed discrepancies between mtDNA and nuclear phylogenies, suggesting that interspecific hybridisation may have been significant during the radiation of these fishes. The approximately 250 cichlid species of Lake Tanganyika have their roots in a monophyletic African cichlid assemblage, but controversies remain about the precise phylogenetic origin and placement of different lineages and consequently about L. Tanganyika colonization scenarios. 3312 AFLP loci and the mitochondrial ND2 gene were genotyped for 91 species representing almost all major lacustrine and riverine haplotilapiine east African cichlid lineages with a focus on L. Tanganyika endemics. Explicitly testing for the possibility of ancient hybridisation events, a comprehensive phylogenetic network hypothesis is proposed for the origin and diversification of L. Tanganyika cichlids. Inference of discordant phylogenetic signal strongly suggests that the genomes of two endemic L. Tanganyika tribes, Eretmodini and Tropheini, are composed of an ancient mixture of riverine and lacustrine lineages. For the first time a strong monophyly signal of all non-haplochromine mouthbrooding species endemic to L. Tanganyika ("ancient mouthbrooders") was detected. Further, in the genomes of early diverging L. Tanganyika endemics Trematocarini, Bathybatini, Hemibatini and Boulengerochromis genetic components of other lineages belonging to the East African Radiation appear to be present. In combination with recent palaeo-geological results showing that tectonic activity in the L. Tanganyika region resulted in highly dynamic and heterogeneous landscape evolution over the Neogene and Pleistocene, the novel phylogenetic data render a single lacustrine basin as the geographical cradle of the endemic L. Tanganyika cichlid lineages unlikely. Instead a scenario of a pre-rift origin of several independent L. Tanganyika precursor lineages which
Juliane D Weiss
Full Text Available A long history of research focused on the East Africa cichlid radiations (EAR revealed discrepancies between mtDNA and nuclear phylogenies, suggesting that interspecific hybridisation may have been significant during the radiation of these fishes. The approximately 250 cichlid species of Lake Tanganyika have their roots in a monophyletic African cichlid assemblage, but controversies remain about the precise phylogenetic origin and placement of different lineages and consequently about L. Tanganyika colonization scenarios. 3312 AFLP loci and the mitochondrial ND2 gene were genotyped for 91 species representing almost all major lacustrine and riverine haplotilapiine east African cichlid lineages with a focus on L. Tanganyika endemics. Explicitly testing for the possibility of ancient hybridisation events, a comprehensive phylogenetic network hypothesis is proposed for the origin and diversification of L. Tanganyika cichlids. Inference of discordant phylogenetic signal strongly suggests that the genomes of two endemic L. Tanganyika tribes, Eretmodini and Tropheini, are composed of an ancient mixture of riverine and lacustrine lineages. For the first time a strong monophyly signal of all non-haplochromine mouthbrooding species endemic to L. Tanganyika ("ancient mouthbrooders" was detected. Further, in the genomes of early diverging L. Tanganyika endemics Trematocarini, Bathybatini, Hemibatini and Boulengerochromis genetic components of other lineages belonging to the East African Radiation appear to be present. In combination with recent palaeo-geological results showing that tectonic activity in the L. Tanganyika region resulted in highly dynamic and heterogeneous landscape evolution over the Neogene and Pleistocene, the novel phylogenetic data render a single lacustrine basin as the geographical cradle of the endemic L. Tanganyika cichlid lineages unlikely. Instead a scenario of a pre-rift origin of several independent L. Tanganyika precursor
Alex O. Awiti
Full Text Available A fundamental feature of the Anthropocene is the inexorable erosion of the self-repairing capacity or adaptive renewal of natural systems because of natural perturbation, exploitation, or management failure. The concept of resilience offers a systematic framework for understanding the dynamics and variables that govern response dynamics of ecosystems. Resilience of haplochromine cichlids is assessed using limnological and biodiversity changes in Lake Victoria, the world's second largest freshwater lake, over the last five decades. The review explores the resurgence of the haplochromine cichlids using Holling's adaptive renewal cycle and attempts to illustrate how resilience-based management approaches might learn from an inadvertent management experiment. The introduction in the 1980s of the Nile perch (Lates niloticus, a fecund and voracious predator of the endemic phytoplankton feeding haplochromine cichlids, anthropogenic eutrophication, and deep water hypoxia have combined in a synergistic way to increase the vulnerability of the lake ecosystem to perturbations that were hitherto absorbed. However, the upsurge in commercial Nile perch fishing appears to be enabling the resurgence of the haplochromine cichlids. The resurgence of haplochromine cichlids is characterized by phenotypic plasticity, ecological and life history traits and demonstrates the critical role of response diversity in the maintenance of systems resilience. Resilience of the haplochromine cichlids resides in the requisite functional response diversity and habitat diversity that provide the resources for renewal and regeneration. This paper concludes that management of Nile perch fisheries and control of nutrient loading into Lake Victoria could halt or reverse eutrophication, hence offer the best promise for a diverse, productive, and resilient social-ecological system.
Full Text Available Alternative reproductive tactics (ARTs are found in several Lake Tanganyika shell-brooding cichlids. Field studies were conducted in the Wonzye population to examine reproductive ecology and ARTs in the Lake Tanganyika shell-brooding cichlid Neolamprologus brevis. We discovered that this fish occurred in both rocky- and sandy-bottom habitats, but in rocky habitats, brood-caring females exclusively occurred in shell-patches that another cichlid species created. All N. brevis of both sexes in the patches were sexually mature, whereas immature males and females with unripe eggs were found frequently in sandy-bottom habitats. Males in sandy-bottom habitats were smaller, but fed more frequently and were in better somatic condition than males in the patches. Similar tendency was found in females. This indicates that N. brevis uses different habitats depending on the stage of its life history, with migration from sandy-bottom habitats to the shell-patches for reproduction. Males in the patches exhibited different behavior patterns: floating above the patches and lying in the patches. The former was larger, more aggressive, and invested less in gonads (relative to body size than the latter. These results accord with those of other shell-brooding Lake Tanganyika cichlids with ARTs, and they therefore suggest the presence of ARTs in N. brevis.
The comparative osteology of the suspensorial complex in 20 species of epilithic algal feeders from Lake Tanganyika was studied as a means of obtaining fundamental data for understanding the adaptive radiation in feeding habits of cichlid fishes in the East African lakes. Six types of suspensorial complex could be recognized within the 20 species studied. For the palatine, ectopterygoid, entopterygoid, metapterygoid, quadrate, symplectic, preoperculum and hyomandibula, 5, 2, 3, 3, 5, 2, 2 and...
Gómez-Laplaza, Luis M; Morgan, Elfed
The ability of the cichlid angelfish, Pterophyllum scalare, to associate time and place to locate food, provided twice a day in two different places, was tested. Food was delivered daily in one corner of the tank in the morning and in the diagonally opposite corner in the afternoon, for a 3-week period, and the distribution of the fish in the tank was noted prior to and during feeding time. The results indicate that, in a fairly uniform environment and in the absence of external time cues, angelfish can discriminate and associate time and place to obtain a food reward. It is suggested that they do so by means of an endogenous timing mechanism. PMID:16129239
Full Text Available Background: The presence of pesticide due to the huge demand for agricultural purposes is very prevalent in surface waters of Iran. These pesticides could finally accumulate in aquatic ecosystems and have been proved to have toxic effects on aquatic animals. The aim of this study was to assess the acute toxicity of Diazinon, Deltamethrin, Butachlor and Pretilachlor on Zebra Cichlid (Cryptoheros nigrofasciatus. Methods: Fish samples were exposed to different concentrations of Diazinon (60% (0, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32 ppm, Deltamethrin (2.5% (0, 0.02, 0.04, 0.10, 0.20 and 0.40 ppm, butachlor (60% (0, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32 ppm and pretilachlor (50% (0, 5, 10, 20, 30 and 40 ppm for 96 h within the 100 L glass aquaria and cumulative mortality of Zebra Cichlid fish was calculated in 24-h interval. Results: The very low LC50 obtained for diazinon (5.06±0.37 ppm, deltamethrin (0.15±0.39 ppm, butachlor (8.93±0.26 ppm and pretilachlor (20.72±0.58 ppm indicated that these are highly toxic chemicals. Conclusion: Our results demonstrate that deltamethrin and pretilachlor had the lowest and highest rate of mortality on the Zebra Cichlid respectively.
Sturmbauer, Christian; Verheyen, Erik; Meyer, Axel
Lake Tanganyika harbors the oldest, morphologically and behaviorally most diverse flock of cichlid species. While the cichlids in Lakes Malawi and Victoria breed their eggs exclusively by buccal incubatio(termed mouthbrooding ), the Tanganyikan cichlid fauna comprise mouthbrooding and substrate-spawning lineages (fish spawn on rocks, and never orally incubate eggs or wrigglers). The substrate-spawning tribe Lamprologini appears to occupy a key position that might allow one to elucidate the o...
Lin, Susan M; Nieves-Puigdoller, Katherine; Brown, Alexandria C; McGraw, Kevin J; Clotfelter, Ethan D
Many animals use carotenoid pigments derived from their diet for coloration and immunity. The carotenoid trade-off hypothesis predicts that, under conditions of carotenoid scarcity, individuals may be forced to allocate limited carotenoids to either coloration or immunity. In polychromatic species, the pattern of allocation may differ among individuals. We tested the carotenoid trade-off hypothesis in the Midas cichlid, Amphilophus citrinellus, a species with two ontogenetic color morphs, barred and gold, the latter of which is the result of carotenoid expression. We performed a diet-supplementation experiment in which cichlids of both color morphs were assigned to one of two diet treatments that differed only in carotenoid content (beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin). We measured integument color using spectrometry, quantified carotenoid concentrations in tissue and plasma, and assessed innate immunity using lysozyme activity and alternative complement pathway assays. In both color morphs, dietary carotenoid supplementation elevated plasma carotenoid circulation but failed to affect skin coloration. Consistent with observable differences in integument coloration, we found that gold fish sequestered more carotenoids in skin tissue than barred fish, but barred fish had higher concentrations of carotenoids in plasma than gold fish. Neither measure of innate immunity differed between gold and barred fish, or as a function of dietary carotenoid supplementation. Lysozyme activity, but not complement activity, was strongly affected by body condition. Our data show that a diet low in carotenoids is sufficient to maintain both coloration and innate immunity in Midas cichlids. Our data also suggest that the developmental transition from the barred to gold morph is not accompanied by a decrease in innate immunity in this species. PMID:20151818
Stiassny Melanie LJ
Full Text Available Abstract Background It is hypothesized that one of the mechanisms promoting diversification in cichlid fishes in the African Great Lakes has been the well-documented pattern of philopatry along shoreline habitats leading to high levels of genetic isolation among populations. However lake habitats are not the only centers of cichlid biodiversity - certain African rivers also contain large numbers of narrowly endemic species. Patterns of isolation and divergence in these systems have tended to be overlooked and are not well understood. Results We examined genetic and morphological divergence among populations of two narrowly endemic cichlid species, Teleogramma depressum and Lamprologus tigripictilis, from a 100 km stretch of the lower Congo River using both nDNA microsatellites and mtDNA markers along with coordinate-based morphological techniques. In L. tigripictilis, the strongest genetic break was concordant with measurable phenotypic divergence but no morphological disjunction was detected for T. depressum despite significant differentiation at mtDNA and nDNA microsatellite markers. Conclusions The genetic markers revealed patterns of philopatry and estimates of genetic isolation that are among the highest reported for any African cichlid species over a comparable geographic scale. We hypothesize that the high levels of philopatry observed are generated and maintained by the extreme hydrology of the lower Congo River.
Taylor, Martin I.; Rico, Ciro; Balshine, Sigal
In this study, we investigate whether apparent social monogamy (where a species forms a pair bond but may participate in copulations outside the pair bond) corresponds with genetic monogamy (where individuals participate only in copulations within a pair bond) in a biparental mouthbrooding cichlid fish, Eretmodus cyanostictus, from Lake Tanganyika, Africa. Our findings suggest that E. cyanostictus is both socially and genetically monogamous and that monogamy may result from limited opportunit...
Sturmbauer Christian; Koblmüller Stephan; Egger Bernd; Sefc Kristina M
Abstract Background Cichlid fishes are notorious for their wealth of intra- and interspecific colour pattern diversity. In Lake Tanganyika, the endemic genus Tropheus represents the most impressive example for geographic variation in the pattern and hue of integument colouration, but the taxonomy of the over 100 mostly allopatric colour morphs remains to a large degree unresolved. Previous studies of mitochondrial DNA sequence data revealed polyphyly of the six nominally described species and...
Ota, Kazutaka; Hori, Michio; Kohda, Masanori
To determine whether the appearance of a reproductively parasitic tactic varies, and how this variation affects territorial males of the Lake Tanganyika cichlid fish Telmatochromis vittatus, we examined the reproductive ecology of territorial males in Mtondwe and compared it with that of a neighboring Wonzye population, where nest density differs from that at Mtondwe. In Wonzye, with high nest density, male tactics change with their body size from a territorial to a non-territorial parasitic ...
Michael J. Pauers
Full Text Available For evolutionary ecologists, the holy grail of visual ecology is to establish an unambiguous link between photoreceptor sensitivity, the spectral environment, and the perception of specific visual stimuli (e.g., mates, food, predators, etc.. Due to the bright nuptial colors of the males, and the role female mate choice plays in their evolution, the haplochromine cichlid fishes of the African great lakes are favorite research subjects for such investigations. Despite this attention, current evidence is equivocal; while distinct correlations among photoreceptor sensitivity, photic environment, and male coloration exist in Lake Victorian haplochromines, attempts to find such correlations in Lake Malawian cichlids have failed. Lake Malawi haplochromines have a wide variability in their short-wavelength-sensitive photoreceptors, especially compared to their mid- and long-wavelength-sensitive photoreceptors; these cichlids also vary in the degree to which they express one of three basic color patterns (vertical bars, horizontal stripes, and solid patches of colors, each of which is likely used in a different form of communication. Thus, we hypothesize that, in these fishes, spectral sensitivity and color pattern have evolved in a correlated fashion to maximize visual communication; specifically, ultraviolet sensitivity should be found in vertically-barred species to promote ‘private’ communication, while striped species should be less likely to have ultraviolet sensitivity, since their color pattern carries ‘public’ information. Using phylogenetic independent contrasts, we found that barred species had strong sensitivity to ultraviolet wavelengths, but that striped species typically lacked sensitivity to ultraviolet light. Further, the only variable, even when environmental variables were simultaneously considered, that could predict ultraviolet sensitivity was color pattern. We also found that, using models of correlated evolution, color
Van Wassenbergh, Sam; Potes, Nuno Zavattieri; Adriaens, Dominique
Presumably as an adaptation for mouthbrooding, many cichlid fish species have evolved a prominent sexual dimorphism in the adult head. Since the head of fishes serves as a bow during locomotion, an evolutionary increase in head volume to brood more eggs can trade-off with the hydrodynamic efficiency of swimming. Here, the differences between males and females in three-dimensional shape and size of the external head surfaces and the effect thereof on drag force during locomotion was analysed for the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), a maternal mouthbrooder. To do so, three-dimensional body surface reconstructions from laser scans and computational fluid dynamics simulations were performed. After scaling the scanned specimens to post-cranial body volume, in order to theoretically equalize propulsive power, the external volume of the head of females was 27% larger than that of males (head length + 14%; head width + 9%). These differences resulted in an approximate 15% increase in drag force. Yet, hydrodynamics imposed important constraints on the adaptation for mouthbrooding as a much more drastic drop in swimming efficiency seems avoided by mainly enlarging the head along the swimming direction. PMID:26224567
Moira J.VAN STAADEN; Adam R.SMITH
The active transmission of information from sender to recelver is a fundamental component of communication,and is therefore a primary facet in evolutionary models of sexual selection.Research in several systetms has underlined the importance of multiple sensory modalities in courtship signals.However,we still tend to think of individuals as having a relatively static signal in consecutive communicative events.While this may be true for certain traits such as body size or coloration,behaviorally modulated signals can quickly violate this assumption.In this work,we explore how intraspecific variation may be an important component of interspeclfic signal divergence using cichlid fishes from Lake Maiawi.Behavloral analyses were made using six species of Malawian cichlids from two divergent genera.while interspecific differences were found between congeners based on species-level analyses of both acoustic and audiovisual signais,intraspecific variation was of a similar magnitude.Specifically,individual fishes were found to possess highiy plastic signal repertoires.This finding was ubiquitous across all species and resulted in a great deal of overlap between heterospecific individuals,despite statistically distinct species means.These results demonstrate that some aspects of courtship in Malawian cichlids are more plastic than previously proposed,and that studies must account for signal variability within individuals.We propose here that bebavioral variability in signaling is important in determining the communication landscape on which signals are perceived.We review potential complexity deriving from multimodal signaling,discuss the sources for such lability,and suggest ways in which is issue may be approached experimentally.
Vanhove, Maarten P M; Pariselle, Antoine; Van Steenberge, Maarten; Raeymaekers, Joost A M; Hablützel, Pascal I; Gillardin, Céline; Hellemans, Bart; Breman, Floris C; Koblmüller, Stephan; Sturmbauer, Christian; Snoeks, Jos; Volckaert, Filip A M; Huyse, Tine
The stunning diversity of cichlid fishes has greatly enhanced our understanding of speciation and radiation. Little is known about the evolution of cichlid parasites. Parasites are abundant components of biodiversity, whose diversity typically exceeds that of their hosts. In the first comprehensive phylogenetic parasitological analysis of a vertebrate radiation, we study monogenean parasites infecting tropheine cichlids from Lake Tanganyika. Monogeneans are flatworms usually infecting the body surface and gills of fishes. In contrast to many other parasites, they depend only on a single host species to complete their lifecycle. Our spatially comprehensive combined nuclear-mitochondrial DNA dataset of the parasites covering almost all tropheine host species (N = 18), reveals species-rich parasite assemblages and shows consistent host-specificity. Statistical comparisons of host and parasite phylogenies based on distance and topology-based tests demonstrate significant congruence and suggest that host-switching is rare. Molecular rate evaluation indicates that species of Cichlidogyrus probably diverged synchronically with the initial radiation of the tropheines. They further diversified through within-host speciation into an overlooked species radiation. The unique life history and specialisation of certain parasite groups has profound evolutionary consequences. Hence, evolutionary parasitology adds a new dimension to the study of biodiversity hotspots like Lake Tanganyika. PMID:26335652
Rijssel, Jacobus Cornelis van (Jacco)
Lake Victoria cichlids show the fastest vertebrate adaptive radiation known which is why they function as a model organism to study evolution. In the past 40 years, Lake Victoria experienced severe environmental changes including the boom of the introduced, predatory Nile perch and eutrophication. Both environmental changes resulted in a decline of haplochromine cichlid species and numbers during the 1980s. However, during the 1990s and 2000s, some haplochromine species recovered. With the us...
Malinsky, Milan; Challis, Richard J; Tyers, Alexandra M; Schiffels, Stephan; Terai, Yohey; Ngatunga, Benjamin P; Miska, Eric A; Durbin, Richard; Genner, Martin J; Turner, George F
The genomic causes and effects of divergent ecological selection during speciation are still poorly understood. Here we report the discovery and detailed characterization of early-stage adaptive divergence of two cichlid fish ecomorphs in a small (700 meters in diameter) isolated crater lake in Tanzania. The ecomorphs differ in depth preference, male breeding color, body shape, diet, and trophic morphology. With whole-genome sequences of 146 fish, we identified 98 clearly demarcated genomic "islands" of high differentiation and demonstrated the association of genotypes across these islands with divergent mate preferences. The islands contain candidate adaptive genes enriched for functions in sensory perception (including rhodopsin and other twilight-vision-associated genes), hormone signaling, and morphogenesis. Our study suggests mechanisms and genomic regions that may play a role in the closely related mega-radiation of Lake Malawi. PMID:26680190
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: As in any vertebrate, heads of fishes are densely packed with functions. These functions often impose conflicting mechanical demands resulting in trade-offs in the species-specific phenotype. When phenotypical traits are linked to gender-specific parental behavior, we expect sexual differences in these trade-offs. This study aims to use mouthbrooding cichlids as an example to test hypotheses on evolutionary trade-offs between intricately linked traits that affect different aspects of fitness. We focused on the oral apparatus, which is not only equipped with features used to feed and breathe, but is also used for the incubation of eggs. We used this approach to study mouthbrooding as part of an integrated functional system with diverging performance requirements and to explore gender-specific selective environments within a species. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Because cichlids are morphologically very diverse, we hypothesize that the implications of the added constraint of mouthbrooding will primarily depend on the dominant mode of feeding of the studied species. To test this, we compared the trade-off for two maternal mouthbrooding cichlid species: a "suction feeder" (Haplochromis piceatus and a "biter" (H. fischeri. The comparison of morphology and performance of both species revealed clear interspecific and intersex differences. Our observation that females have larger heads was interpreted as a possible consequence of the fact that in both the studied species mouthbrooding is done by females only. As hypothesized, the observed sexual dimorphism in head shape is inferred as being suboptimal for some aspects of the feeding performance in each of the studied species. Our comparison also demonstrated that the suction feeding species had smaller egg clutches and more elongated eggs. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings support the hypothesis that there is a trade-off between mouthbrooding and feeding performance in the two
W James Cooper
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: How particular changes in functional morphology can repeatedly promote ecological diversification is an active area of evolutionary investigation. The African rift-lake cichlids offer a calibrated time series of the most dramatic adaptive radiations of vertebrate trophic morphology yet described, and the replicate nature of these events provides a unique opportunity to test whether common changes in functional morphology have repeatedly facilitated their ecological success. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Specimens from 87 genera of cichlid fishes endemic to Lakes Tanganyka, Malawi and Victoria were dissected in order to examine the functional morphology of cichlid feeding. We quantified shape using geometric morphometrics and compared patterns of morphological diversity using a series of analytical tests. The primary axes of divergence were conserved among all three radiations, and the most prevalent changes involved the size of the preorbital region of the skull. Even the fishes from the youngest of these lakes (Victoria, which exhibit the lowest amount of skull shape disparity, have undergone extensive preorbital evolution relative to other craniofacial traits. Such changes have large effects on feeding biomechanics, and can promote expansion into a wide array of niches along a bentho-pelagic ecomorphological axis. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Here we show that specific changes in trophic anatomy have evolved repeatedly in the African rift lakes, and our results suggest that simple morphological alterations that have large ecological consequences are likely to constitute critical components of adaptive radiations in functional morphology. Such shifts may precede more complex shape changes as lineages diversify into unoccupied niches. The data presented here, combined with observations of other fish lineages, suggest that the preorbital region represents an evolutionary module that can respond quickly to natural selection when fishes
Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja; Ladich, Friedrich; Plath, Martin; Metscher, Brian D.; Heß, Martin
Background: Cichlid fishes show considerable diversity in swim bladder morphology. In members of the subfamily Etroplinae, the connection between anterior swim bladder extensions and the inner ears enhances sound transmission and translates into an improved hearing ability. We tested the hypothesis that those swim bladder modifications coincide with differences in inner ear morphology and thus compared Steatocranus tinanti (vestigial swim bladder), Hemichromis guttatus (large swim bladder wit...
E.A. Hassan; M.F.M. Soliman; M.A. Ghobashy
In this study, the occurrence of heterophyid infection in two well-known hosts of heterophyd in Egyptian lake (Manzala); the mullet, Liza auratus and the cichlid, Oreochromis niloticus was investigated. Furthermore, the potential factors that possibly affect the occurrence of the infection including host sex, length, weight and seasonal variation were considered. The pathological response of the two fish host to the infection was studied. Results showed that the prevalence, abundance and inte...
Takahashi, Tetsumi; Sota, Teiji
The huge monophyletic group of the East African cichlid radiations (EAR) consists of thousands of species belonging to 12-14 tribes; the number of tribes differs among studies. Many studies have inferred phylogenies of EAR tribes using various genetic markers. However, these phylogenies partly contradict one another and can have weak statistic support. In this study, we conducted maximum-likelihood (ML) phylogenetic analyses using restriction site-associated DNA (RAD) sequences and propose a new robust phylogenetic hypothesis among Lake Tanganyika cichlid fishes, which cover most EAR tribes. Data matrices can vary in size and contents depending on the strategies used to process RAD sequences. Therefore, we prepared 23 data matrices with various processing strategies. The ML phylogenies inferred from 15 large matrices (2.0×10(6) to 1.1×10(7) base pairs) resolved every tribe as a monophyletic group with 100% bootstrap support and shared the same topology regarding relationships among the tribes. Most nodes among the tribes were supported by 100% bootstrap values, and the bootstrap support for the other node varied among the 15 ML trees from 70% to 100%. These robust ML trees differ partly in topology from those in earlier studies, and these phylogenetic relationships have important implications for the tribal classification of EAR. PMID:27068840
Full Text Available Background: Aquatic ecosystems are frequently subjected to contamination by toxic heavy metals and pesticides, yet very little is known about the influence of pesticides on bioaccumulation of heavy metals in aquatic organisms. Mercury is a toxic metal with no known biological benefit to organisms. Bioavailability of mercury in aquatic environments depends on biological and non-biological parameters including other pollutants. Therefore, the objectives of this research were to determine the effects of permethrin on bioaccumulation of mercury in zebra cichlid. Methods: Acute toxicity (LC50 of permethrin and mercury chloride was evaluated by estimating mortality in Probit Model in SPSS (version 19.0 IBM. In sub-lethal toxicity, zebra cichlid (Cichlasoma nigrofasciatum was exposed to various concentrations of permethrin (0.0, 0.40, 0.80, 1.20 and 1.60 µg.L-1 combined with 20 µg.L-1 mercury chloride for 15 days. At the end of the experiment, mercury concentrations were measured using ICP-OES-Perkin elmer (optima 7300-DV. Results: 96 h LC50 values of permethrin and mercury for C. nigrofasciatum were calculated to be 17.55 µg.L-1 and 140.38 µg.L-1, respectively. Our results clearly showed that the bioaccumulation of mercury in the specimens increased with increasing concentrations of permethrin to 1.20 and 1.60 µg.L-1. Conclusion: Increasing the concentration of permethrin had synergistic effects on the bioaccumulation of mercury in fish.
@@ Last Saturday my cousin (表兄) came to my home. We were very happy to see each other. We decided that the next day we went to fish. We got up very early that day. When we left home,the moon could still be seen in the sky.
Smith, Peter F; Konings, Ad; Kornfield, Irv
The importance of species recognition to taxonomic diversity among Lake Malawi cichlids has been frequently discussed. Hybridization - the apparent breakdown of species recognition - has been observed sporadically among cichlids and has been viewed as both a constructive and a destructive force with respect to species diversity. Here we provide genetic evidence of a natural hybrid cichlid population with a unique colour phenotype and elevated levels of genetic variation. We discuss the potential evolutionary consequences of interspecific hybridization in Lake Malawi cichlids and propose that the role of hybridization in generating both genetic variability and species diversity of Lake Malawi cichlids warrants further consideration. PMID:12919487
Edelmann, E.; Anken, R.; Rahmann, H.
Previous investigations on neonate swordtail fish (Xiphophorus helleri) revealed that otolithic calcium incorporation (visualized using the calcium-tracer alizarin- complexone) and thus otolith growth had ceased after nerve transection, supporting a hypothesis according to which the gravity-dependent otolith growth is regulated neuronally. Subsequent investigations on larval cichlid fish (Oreochromis mossambicus) yielded contrasting results, repeatedly depending on the particular batch of cichlids investigated: Like neonate swordtails, type I cichlids revealed a stop of calcium incorporation after unilateral vestibular nerve transection. Their behaviour after transection was normal and the otolithic calcium incorporation in controls of the same batch was symmetrical. In type II cichlids, however, vestibular nerve transection had no effect on otolithic calcium incorporation. They behaved kinetotically after transection (this kind of kinetosis was qualitatively similar to the swimming behaviour exhibited by larval cichlids during microgravity in the course of parabolic aircraft flights). The otolithic calcium incorporation in control animals was asymmetrical. These results stongly suggest that the effects of vestibular nerve transection as well as the efficacy of the mechanism, which regulates otolith growth/otolithic calcium incorporation, are - depending on the particular batch of animals - genetically predispositioned. Thus, it is assumed that the mechanisms regulating otolith growth and equlibibrium differ in the two types of cichlid fish. This work was financially supported by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) e.V. (FKZ: 50 WB 9997).
Aguirre-Ayala, Daniel; Vidal-Martínez, Víctor Manuel
This study aimed to determine the susceptibility of the Mayan cichlid Cichlasoma urophthalmus to infection with the fungus Aphanomyces invadans (also known as epizootic ulcerative syndrome [EUS]). A total of 27 C. urophthalmus were exposed to the original A. Invadans 2006/86/EC strain by intramuscularly injecting the fish with 25,000 zoospores/ml or exposing the fish to a suspension of 25,000 zoospores/ml in 6-L aquaria for 30 days. To assess the infectious capacity of A. invadans, 3 golden barbs (Puntius semifasciolatus) were infected intramuscularly with 200,000 zoospores/ml. A second experiment using 100 C. urophthalmus was performed for 60 days with 50 fish in each treatment group. A polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based diagnostic method was used; muscle and gills were the target tissues. In the first experiment, none of the exposed C. urophthalmus developed skin lesions related to A. invadans infection. However, PCR analysis revealed that infection had occurred. For the intramuscular treatment, there were significant differences between the controls and the muscle samples (Fisher's exact test; P 0.05). All golden barbs became infected, as indicated by PCR, and developed skin lesions typical of A. invadans infection. We concluded that C. urophthalmus was infected with A. invadans but was an asymptomatic carrier because skin lesions did not develop. In the second experiment, all fish were negative, suggesting that the fish had cleared the infection by the end of the experiment. PMID:25742055
Albertson R Craig
Full Text Available Abstract Background While bilaterality is a defining characteristic of triploblastic animals, several assemblages have managed to break this symmetry in order to exploit the adaptive peaks garnered through the lateralization of behaviour or morphology. One striking example of an evolved asymmetry in vertebrates comes from a group of scale-eating cichlid fishes from Lake Tanganyika. Members of the Perissodini tribe of cichlid fishes have evolved dental and craniofacial asymmetries in order to more effectively remove scales from the left or right flanks of prey. Here we examine the evolution and development of craniofacial morphology and laterality among Lake Tanganyika scale-eating cichlids. Results Using both geometric and traditional morphometric methods we found that the craniofacial evolution in the Perissodini involved discrete shifts in skeletal anatomy that reflect differences in habitat preference and predation strategies. Further, we show that the evolutionary history of the Perissodini is characterized by an accentuation of craniofacial laterality such that certain taxa show elaborate sided differences in craniofacial shape consistent with the sub-partitioning of function between sides of the head during attacks. Craniofacial laterality in the scale-eating specialist Perissodus microlepis was found to be evident early in development and exhibited a unimodal distribution, which is contrary to the adult condition where jaw laterality has been described as a discrete, bimodal antisymmetry. Finally, using linkage and association analyses we identified a conserved locus for jaw handedness that segregates among East African cichlids. Conclusions We suggest that, during the evolution of the Perissodini, selection has accentuated a latent, genetically determined handedness of the craniofacial skeleton, enabling the evolution of jaw asymmetries in order to increase predation success. Continued work on the developmental genetic basis of
Patrick M Barks
Full Text Available For many animals, the ability to distinguish cues indicative of predation risk from cues unrelated to predation risk is not entirely innate, but rather is learned and improved with experience. Two pathways to such learning are possible. First, an animal could initially express antipredator behaviour toward a wide range of cues and subsequently learn which of those cues are non-threatening. Alternatively, it could initially express no antipredator behaviour toward a wide range of cues and subsequently learn which of them are threatening. While the learned recognition of threatening cues may occur either through personal interaction with a cue (asocial learning or through observation of the behaviour of social companions toward a cue (social learning, the learned recognition of non-threatening cues seems to occur exclusively through habituation, a form of asocial learning. Here, we tested whether convict cichlid fish (Amatitlaniasiquia can socially learn to recognize visual cues in their environment as either threatening or non-threatening. We exposed juvenile convict cichlids simultaneously to a novel visual cue and one of three (visual social cues: a social cue indicative of non-risk (the sight of conspecifics that had previously been habituated to the novel cue, a social cue indicative of predation risk (the sight of conspecifics trained to fear the novel cue, or a control treatment with no social cue. The subsequent response of focal fish, when presented with the novel cue alone, was not influenced by the social cue that they had previously witnessed. We therefore did not find evidence that convict cichlids in our study could use social learning to recognize novel visual cues as either threatening or non-threatening. We consider alternative explanations for our findings.
Paschoal, Fabiano; Scholz, Tomáš; Tavares-Dias, Marcos; Luque, José L
Two new species of Sciadicleithrum Kritsky, Thatcher and Boeger, 1989 are described from two cichlids from the Araguarí River, State of Amapá, northern Brazil. Sciadicleithrum edgari n. sp. from Satanoperca jurupari (Heckel, 1840) differs from all congeneric species in the morphology (hook-shaped, with middle process and distally bifurcate) of the accessory piece of the male copulatory organ (MCO). Sciadiclethrum araguariensis n. sp. from Crenicichla labrina (Spix and Agassiz, 1831) can be distinguished from all other species by a Y-shaped accessory piece of MCO. In addition to the description of two new species, new host and geographical records of six dactylogyrid monogeneans from cichlid fishes are presented. PMID:26751887
Suzanne M. GRAY; Laura H. McDONNELL; Fabio G. CINQUEMANI; Lauren J. CHAPMAN
Aquatic biodiversity is being lost at an unprecedented rate.One factor driving this loss is increased turbidity,an environmental stressor that can impose behavioral,morphological,and/or physiological costs on fishes.Here we describe the behavioral response of a widespread African cichlid,Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae,to turbidity.We used a split-brood rearing design to test if F1 offspring reared in turbid water,originating from river (turbid) and swamp (clear) populations,behave differently than full-sibs reared in clear water.We examined two facets of behavior:(1) behaviors of fish in full sib groups,including activity level and social dynamics collected during the rearing period; and (2) male aggressive behavior directed at potential male competitors after fish had reached maturity; this was done in an experimental set-up independent of the rearing aquaria.Regardless of population of origin,fish reared in turbid water were marginally less active and performed fewer social behaviors than those reared in clear water.On the other hand,when tested against a competitor in turbid water,males performed more aggressive behaviors,regardless of population of origin or rearing environment.Our results suggest a plastic behavioral response to turbidity that may allow P multicolor to persist over a range of turbidity levels in nature by decreasing activity and general social behaviors and intensifying reproductive behaviors to ensure reproductive success [ Current Zoology 58 (1):146-157,2012].
Full Text Available Background: There is much evidence indicating that natural substances from edible and medicinal plants possess powerful antioxidant and hepatoprotective activities. The objective of the present study was to investigate the potential hepatoprotective effect of silymarin in fish exposed to malathion. Methods: Zebra cichlid fish were allocated into five groups of which one group received normal feed and served as control. Fish from group 2 were treated with 0.1 mg.L-1 malathion. Fish from group 3 and 4 were fed with enriched diet with 1400 mg and 2100 mg silymarin per 1 kg feed, respectively. While fish from group 5 and 6 were fed with enriched diet with 1400 mg and 2100 mg silymarin per 1 kg feed, respectively and simultaneously were treated with 0.1 mg.L-1 malathion for 15 days. Activities of hepatic enzymes including alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase and lactate dehydrogenase were evaluated. Oxidative stress was ascertained by measuring malondialdehyde as marker of lipid peroxidation and total cellular antioxidant capacity. Results: Exposure to malathion caused a significant increase in MDA levels and altered AST, ALT, ALP and LDH activities in liver tissues (p<0.05. The hepatic antioxidant capacity was significantly lowered in malathion treated fish as compared to the control group (p<0.05. Treatment with silymarin significantly ameliorated these changes in the malathion-treated groups. Conclusion: These finding demonstrated that silymarin have protective effects against the toxic influence of malathion on the examined biochemical parameters in liver tissue of fish.
Full Text Available This study describes the hematological parameters in Iranocichla hormuzensis, an Iranian freshwater cichlid important as ornamental and food fish. Forty fish were captured with seine net at Mehran river Hormozgan province, Iran. Blood was used to determine the total counts of red blood cells (RBC and white blood cells (WBC, hematocrit, mean corpuscular volume (MCV, mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC and morphometric data of erythrocytes. The Iranian fish showed lower RBC and WBC values than the other cichlids (Oreochromis niloticus, O. aureus, O. mossambicus, O. hybrid, Cichlasoma dimerus and Cichla monoculus. Hematocrit did not vary among the species, but MCV, MCH and MCHC in I. hormuzensis were higher than those for O. niloticus, O. aureus, O. hybrid, C. dimerus and C. monoculus. These differences may be related to different life habit of fish. This study suggests that I. hormuzensis is well acclimated to the environment being the first report for its hematology. It is also suggested high efficiency in oxygen transportation, and an efficient inflow of oxygen by the gills, indicating the welfare of fish on this environment.Este estudo descreve os parâmetros hematológicos em Iranocichla hormuzensis, ciclídeo iraniano de água doce, importante como peixe ornamental e como de consumo. Quarenta peixes foram capturados com rede no rio Mehran, província de Hormozgan, Irã. O sangue foi usado para determinar as contagens totais de eritrócitos (RBC e leucócitos (WBC, hematócrito, volume corpuscular médio (MCV, hemoglobina corpuscular média (MCH, concentração de hemoglobina corpuscular média (MCHC e dados morfométricos de eritrócitos. O peixe iraniano mostrou valores menores de RBC e WBC do que outros ciclídeos (Oreochromis niloticus, O. aureus, O. mossambicus, O. hybrid, Cichlasoma dimerus e Cichla monoculus. O hematócrito não variou entre as espécies, mas MCV, MCH e MCHC em I
E. F. Mendoza-Franco; V. Vidal-Martínez; R. Simá-Álvarez; R. Rodríguez-Canul; C. Vivas-Rodríguez; Scholz, T
Cichlids, Cichlasoma urophthalmus, collected in a flooded quarry in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, from January through June 1992, had high levels of infection with the ancyrocephaline Sciadicleithrum mexicanum (Monogena: Dactylogyridade) in all montlhly samples. Neither occurrence nor maturation of the worms eshibited any pronounced monthly fluctuation. The infection rate was found to be sizedependent, greater in longer fish. The worms occurred on primary lamellae of gill filaments of all ar...
Godiksen, Helene; Jessen, Flemming
the enzyme or its membrane lipid environment is still a matter of discussion. In this study we compared the temperature dependence and Ca2+-dependence of SR Ca2+-ATPase in haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus), salmon (Salmo, salar), rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and zebra cichlid (Cichlasoma...... nigrofasciatum). The Arrhenius plot of zebra cichlid showed a break point at 20 degreesC, and the haddock Arrhenius plot was non-linear with pronounced changes in slope in the. temperature area, 6-14 degreesC. In Arrhenius plot from both salmon and rainbow trout a plateau exists with an almost constant SR Ca2......+- ATPase activity. The temperature range of the plateau was 14-21 and 18-25 degreesC in salmon and rainbow trout, respectively. Ca2+-dependence in the four different fish species investigated was very similar with half maximal activation (K-0.5) between 0.2 and 0.6 muM and half maximal inhibition (I-0...
Kirchberger, Paul C; Sefc, Kristina M; Christian Sturmbauer; Stephan Koblmüller
Hybridization among littoral cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika was inferred in several molecular phylogenetic studies. The phenomenon is generally attributed to the lake level-induced shoreline and habitat changes. These allow for allopatric divergence of geographically fragmented populations alternating with locally restricted secondary contact and introgression between incompletely isolated taxa. In contrast, the deepwater habitat is characterized by weak geographic structure and a high po...
The Objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of sea urchin stuff as an alternative fish food of Oreochromis niloticus during growth. This African cichlid is widely distributed where temperature and food are suitable for ill growth and reproduction. In many Countries, it was introduced for vegetation control, pond culture, and recreational and commercial fishing because of its excellent aqua culture potential, fast growth, omnivorous feeding habits and tolerance to low wate...
Kochhann, Daiani; Campos, Derek Felipe; Val, Adalberto Luis
The primary goal of this study was to understand how changes in temperature and oxygen could influence social behaviour and aerobic metabolism of the Amazonian dwarf cichlid Apistogramma agassizii. Social hierarchies were established over a period of 96h by observing the social interactions, feeding behaviour and shelter use in groups of four males. In the experimental environment, temperature was increased to 29°C in the high-temperature treatment, and oxygen lowered to 1.0mg·L(-1)O2 in the hypoxia treatment. Fish were maintained at this condition for 96h. The control was maintained at 26°C and 6.6mg·L(-1)O2. After the experimental exposure, metabolism was measured as routine metabolic rate (RMR) and electron transport system (ETS) activity. There was a reduction in hierarchy stability at high-temperature. Aggression changed after environmental changes. Dominant and subdominant fish at high temperatures increased their biting, compared with control-dominant. In contrast, hypoxia-dominant fish decreased their aggressive acts compared with all other fish. Shelter use decreased in control and hypoxic dominant fish. Dominant fish from undisturbed environments eat more than their subordinates. There was a decrease of RMR in fish exposed to the hypoxic environment when compared with control or high-temperature fish, independent of social position. Control-dominant fish had higher RMR than their subordinates. ETS activity increased in fish exposed to high temperatures; however, there was no effect on social rank. Our study reinforces the importance of environmental changes for the maintenance of hierarchies and their characteristics and highlights that most of the changes occur in the dominant position. PMID:26387464
Schluessel, V; Beil, O; Weber, T; Bleckmann, H
Several species have been shown to perceive symmetry as a measure of superior genetic quality, useful for assessing potential mates or mediating other visual activities such as the selection of food sources. The current study assessed whether Pseudotropheus sp. and Chiloscyllium griseum, two fish species from distantly related groups, possess symmetry perception. In alternative two choice experiments, individuals were tested for spontaneous preferences and trained to discriminate between abstract symmetrical and asymmetrical stimulus pairs. Pair discriminations were followed by extensive categorization experiments. Transfer tests elucidated whether bilaterally symmetrical and rotationally symmetrical stimuli could be distinguished. Sharks were also tested for the degree of dissimilarity between two symbols that could still be detected. While sharks showed both a spontaneous preference for symmetry as well as remarkable discrimination abilities by succeeding in all of the presented tasks, cichlids showed no spontaneous preference, had difficulties in discriminating between symbols and performed poorly in the categorization experiments. Sharks distinguished between bilaterally and rotationally symmetrical stimuli and easily differentiated between a four-armed cross (all arms 90° apart) and a cross where one of the arms was only 45° spaced from the one next to it. Performance did not decline when the separation was extended to 70°, but was significantly reduced at an 80° separation. Results indicate that the ability for symmetry perception varies across fish species and individuals, whereby some can detect even subtle differences in this respect. PMID:24794621
The cichlid fish radiations in the African Great Lakes differ from all other known cases of rapid speciation in vertebrates by their spectacular trophic diversity and richness of sympatric species, comparable to the most rapid angiosperm radiations. I review factors that may have facilitated these radiations and compare these with insights from recent work on plant radiations. Work to date suggests that it was a coincidence of ecological opportunity, intrinsic ecological versatility and genomic flexibility, rapidly evolving behavioral mate choice and large amounts of standing genetic variation that permitted these spectacular fish radiations. I propose that spatially orthogonal gradients in the fit of phenotypes to the environment facilitate speciation because they allow colonization of alternative fitness peaks during clinal speciation despite local disruptive selection. Such gradients are manifold in lakes because of the interaction of water depth as an omnipresent third spatial dimension with other fitness-relevant variables. I introduce a conceptual model of adaptive radiation that integrates these elements and discuss its applicability to, and predictions for, plant radiations. PMID:25983053
Edelmann, E.; Anken, R. H.; Rahmann, H.
Previous investigations on neonate swordtail fish (Xiphophorus helleri) revealed that otolithic calcium incorporation (visualized using the calcium tracer alizarin complexone) and thus otolith growth had ceased after nerve transection, supporting a hypothesis according to which the gravity-dependent otolith growth is regulated neuronally. Subsequent investigations on larval cichlid fish (Oreochromis mossambicus) yielded contrasting results, repeatedly depending on the particular batch of cichlids investigated. Like most neonate swordtails, Type I cichlids revealed a stop of calcium incorporation after unilateral vestibular nerve transection. Their behaviour after transection was normal, and the otolithic calcium incorporation in controls of the same batch was symmetric. In Type II cichlids, however, vestibular nerve transection had no effect on otolithic calcium incorporation. They behaved kinetotically after transection (this kind of kinetosis was qualitatively similar to the swimming behaviour exhibited by larval cichlids during microgravity in the course of parabolic aircraft flights). The otolithic calcium incorporation in control animals was asymmetric. These results show that the effects of vestibular nerve transection as well as the efficacy of the mechanism, which regulates otolith growth/otolithic calcium incorporation, are - depending on the particular batch of animals - genetically predispositioned. In conclusion, the regulation of otolithic calcium incorporation is guided neuronally, in part via the vestibular nerve and, in part, via a further pathway, which remains to be addressed in the course of future investigations.
O'Connor, Constance M; Marsh-Rollo, Susan E; Aubin-Horth, Nadia; Balshine, Sigal
Comparative studies have revealed that vasopressin-oxytocin pathways are associated with both pair bonding and grouping behavior. However, the relationship between pair bonding and grouping behavior remains unclear. In this study, our aim was to identify whether two species that differ in grouping behavior display a corresponding difference in their pair bonds, and in the underlying vasopressin-oxytocin hormonal pathways. Using two species of cichlid fishes, the highly social Neolamprologus pulcher and the non-social Telmatochromis temporalis, we measured proximity of pairs during pair bond formation, and then measured social behaviors (proximity, aggression, submission, affiliation) and brain gene expression of isotocin and arginine vasotocin (the teleost homologues of oxytocin and vasopressin, respectively), as well as their receptors, after a temporary separation and subsequent reunion of the bonded pairs. Pairs of the social species spent more time in close proximity relative to the non-social species. Rates of aggression increased in both species following the separation and reunion treatment, relative to controls that were not separated. Overall, whole brain expression of isotocin was higher in the social species relative to the non-social species, and correlated with proximity, submission, and affiliation, but only in the social species. Our results suggest that both a social and a non-social cichlid species have similar behavioral responses to a temporary separation from a mate, and we found no difference in the brain gene expression of measured hormones and receptors based on our separation-reunion treatment. However, our results highlight the importance of isotocin in mediating submissive and affiliative behaviors in cichlid fishes, and demonstrate that isotocin has species-specific correlations with socially relevant behaviors. PMID:26519858
Konan Felix Koffi
Full Text Available Coptodon walteri Thys van den Audenaerde 1968, an endemic cichlid of Ivory Coast and Liberia, is assessed as Near Threatened due to fishing pressure and loss of habitats, and aquatic pollution as a result of extensive clandestine gold mining in the bed of the Cavally River. There is an immediate need for developing conservation and management plans for this species.
Hotta, Takashi; Takeyama, Tomohiro; Jordan, Lyndon Alexander; Kohda, Masanori
Animal contests are costly and tend to escalate when rivals have similar competitive abilities. Individuals that remember dominance relationships with rivals may avoid repeated agonistic interactions and hence avoid the costs of repeated escalation of contests. However, it can be difficult to experimentally disentangle the effects of memory from those of loser effects (losers behaving subordinately due to prior defeats). Here, we test whether loser effects or individual memory mediate contest behaviour in the African cichlid, Julidochromis transcriptus. We find that on days 3 and 5 after initial contests, losers display subordinate behaviour to contest winners but not to novel contestants. However, this effect disappears after 7 days, at which time losers do not display subordinate behaviour to either rival. These results show that (1) this fish can recall a previously dominant contestant for up to 5 days and (2) as no subordinate displays were shown to the novel contestant, there are no evidences for loser effects in this species. Such short-term memory of past interactions may have broad significance in social species with repeated interactions.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Cichlid fishes in Lake Tanganyika exhibit remarkable diversity in their feeding habits. Among them, seven species in the genus Perissodus are known for their unique feeding habit of scale eating with specialized feeding morphology and behaviour. Although the origin of the scale-eating habit has long been questioned, its evolutionary process is still unknown. In the present study, we conducted interspecific phylogenetic analyses for all nine known species in the tribe Perissodini (seven Perissodus and two Haplotaxodon species using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP analyses of the nuclear DNA. On the basis of the resultant phylogenetic frameworks, the evolution of their feeding habits was traced using data from analyses of stomach contents, habitat depths, and observations of oral jaw tooth morphology. Results AFLP analyses resolved the phylogenetic relationships of the Perissodini, strongly supporting monophyly for each species. The character reconstruction of feeding ecology based on the AFLP tree suggested that scale eating evolved from general carnivorous feeding to highly specialized scale eating. Furthermore, scale eating is suggested to have evolved in deepwater habitats in the lake. Oral jaw tooth shape was also estimated to have diverged in step with specialization for scale eating. Conclusion The present evolutionary analyses of feeding ecology and morphology based on the obtained phylogenetic tree demonstrate for the first time the evolutionary process leading from generalised to highly specialized scale eating, with diversification in feeding morphology and behaviour among species.
S. Shawn McCafferty
Full Text Available It is well appreciated that historical and ecological processes are important determinates of freshwater biogeographic assemblages. Phylogeography can potentially lend important insights into the relative contribution of historical processes in biogeography. However, the extent that phylogeography reflects historical patterns of drainage connection may depend in large part on the dispersal capability of the species. Here, we test the hypothesis that due to their relatively greater dispersal capabilities, the neotropical cichlid species Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus will display a phylogeographic pattern that differs from previously described biogeographic assemblages in this important region. Based on an analysis of 318 individuals using mtDNA ATPase 6/8 sequence and restriction fragment length polymorphism data, we found eight distinct clades that are closely associated with biogeographic patterns. The branching patterns among the clades and a Bayesian clock analysis suggest a relatively rapid colonization and diversification among drainages in the emergent Isthmus of Panama followed by the coalescing of some drainages due to historical connections. We also present evidence for extensive cross-cordillera sharing of clades in central Panama and the Canal region. Our results suggest that contemporary phylogeographic patterns and diversification in Lower Central American fishes reflect an interaction of historical drainage connections, dispersal, and demographic processes.
Ashley R. ROBART
The differential allocation hypothesis predicts individuals will increase their reproductive investment when mated to a high quality partner.In many species of fish with biparental care females prefer large males due to the males' greater ability to raise more offspring to independence.I examined the relationship between mate quality,parental care and number of offspring in a natural population of convict cichlids Amatitlania siquia.The frequency of frontal displays by females was positively correlated with male standard length.Additionally,as males increased in length relative to their mate,females increased the frequency of chases towards predators,while males decreased the number of displays towards brood predators.This trade-off in parental effort within a pair due to mate quality is a key prediction of differential allocation.The number of offspring was correlated with male,but not female,standard length.These results support the differential allocation hypothesis in that females offered more parental care to offspring of a larger male,while their mates decreased the amount of care they provided.Additionally,females benefited in terms of number of offspring by pairing with higher quality mates.Increased female investment may provide an incentive to ensure male care and maintain pair bonding,which could lead to greater reproductive success through increased offspring survival [Current Zoology 58 (1):66-72,2012].
Kazutaka Ota; Masanori Kohda; Tetsu Sato
When males are the larger sex, a positive allometric relationship between male and female sizes is often found across populations of a single species (i.e. Rensch’s rule). This pattern is typically explained by a sexual selection pressure on males. Here, we report that the allometric relationship was negative across populations of a shell-brooding cichlid fish Lamprologus callipterus, although males are extremely larger than females. Male L. callipterus collect and defend empty snail shells in each of which a female breeds. We found that, across six populations, male and female sizes are positively correlated with not only sexual and fecundity selection indices, but also with shell sizes. Given their different reproductive behaviours, these correlations mean that males are required to be more powerful, and thus larger, to transport larger shells, while female bodies are reduced to the shell size to enable them to enter the shells. Among the three size selections (sexual selection, fecundity selection and shell size), shell size explained the allometry, suggesting that females are more strongly subject to size selection associated with shell size availability than males. However, the allometry was violated when considering an additional population where size-selection regimes of males differed from that of other populations. Therefore, sexual size allometry will be violated by body size divergence induced by multiple selection regimes.
Fitzpatrick, J L; Desjardins, J K; Milligan, N; Montgomerie, R; Balshine, S
Theory predicts that males experiencing elevated levels of sperm competition will invest more in gonads and produce faster-swimming sperm. Although there is ample evidence in support of the first prediction, few studies have examined sperm swimming speed in relation to sperm competition. In this study, we tested these predictions from sperm competition theory by examining sperm characteristics in Telmatochromis vittatus, a small shell-brooding cichlid fish endemic to Lake Tanganyika. Males exhibit four different reproductive tactics: pirate, territorial, satellite, and sneaker. Pirate males temporarily displace all other competing males from a shell nest, whereas sneaker males always release sperm in the presence of territorial and satellite males. Due to the fact that sneakers spawn in the presence of another male, sneakers face the highest levels of sperm competition and pirates the lowest, whereas satellites and territorials experience intermediate levels. In accordance with predictions, sperm from sneakers swam faster than sperm from males adopting the other reproductive tactics, whereas sperm from pirates was slowest. Interestingly, we were unable to detect any variation in sperm tail length among these reproductive tactics. Thus, sperm competition appears to have influenced sperm energetics in this species without having any influence on sperm size. PMID:17460159
Tsuboi, Masahito; Kotrschal, Alexander; Hayward, Alexander; Buechel, Severine Denise; Zidar, Josefina; Løvlie, Hanne; Kolm, Niclas
Brain size is strongly associated with body size in all vertebrates. This relationship has been hypothesized to be an important constraint on adaptive brain size evolution. The essential assumption behind this idea is that static (i.e., within species) brain-body allometry has low ability to evolve. However, recent studies have reported mixed support for this view. Here, we examine brain-body static allometry in Lake Tanganyika cichlids using a phylogenetic comparative framework. We found considerable variation in the static allometric intercept, which explained the majority of variation in absolute and relative brain size. In contrast, the slope of the brain-body static allometry had relatively low variation, which explained less variation in absolute and relative brain size compared to the intercept and body size. Further examination of the tempo and mode of evolution of static allometric parameters confirmed these observations. Moreover, the estimated evolutionary parameters indicate that the limited observed variation in the static allometric slope could be a result of strong stabilizing selection. Overall, our findings suggest that the brain-body static allometric slope may represent an evolutionary constraint in Lake Tanganyika cichlids. PMID:27241216
Paul C. Kirchberger
Full Text Available Hybridization among littoral cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika was inferred in several molecular phylogenetic studies. The phenomenon is generally attributed to the lake level-induced shoreline and habitat changes. These allow for allopatric divergence of geographically fragmented populations alternating with locally restricted secondary contact and introgression between incompletely isolated taxa. In contrast, the deepwater habitat is characterized by weak geographic structure and a high potential for gene flow, which may explain the lower species richness of deepwater than littoral lineages. For the same reason, divergent deepwater lineages should have evolved strong intrinsic reproductive isolation already in the incipient stages of diversification, and, consequently, hybridization among established lineages should have been less frequent than in littoral lineages. We test this hypothesis in the endemic Lake Tanganyika deepwater cichlid tribe Bathybatini by comparing phylogenetic trees of Hemibates and Bathybates species obtained with nuclear multilocus AFLP data with a phylogeny based on mitochondrial sequences. Consistent with our hypothesis, largely congruent tree topologies and negative tests for introgression provided no evidence for introgressive hybridization between the deepwater taxa. Together, the nuclear and mitochondrial data established a well-supported phylogeny and suggested ecological segregation during speciation.
Sturmbauer, Christian; Salzburger, Walter; Duftner, Nina; Schelly, Robert; Koblmüller, Stephan
Lake Tanganyika comprises a cichlid species flock with substrate-breeding and mouthbrooding lineages. While sexual selection via mate choice on male mating color is thought to boost speciation rates in mouthbrooding cichlids, this is not the case in substrate-breeding lamprologines, which mostly form stable pairs and lack sexual dichromatism. We present a comprehensive reconstruction of the evolution of the cichlid tribe Lamprologini, based upon mtDNA sequences and multilocus nuclear DNA (AFL...
Schwarzer, Julia; Swartz, Ernst Roelof; Vreven, Emmanuel; Snoeks, Jos; Cotterill, Fenton Peter David; Misof, Bernhard; Schliewen, Ulrich Kurt
The megadiverse haplochromine cichlid radiations of the East African lakes, famous examples of explosive speciation and adaptive radiation, are according to recent studies, introgressed by different riverine lineages. This study is based on the first comprehensive mitochondrial and nuclear DNA dataset from extensive sampling of riverine haplochromine cichlids. It includes species from the lower River Congo and Angolan (River Kwanza) drainages. Reconstruction of phylogenetic hypotheses reveale...
Zahradníčková, Petra; Barson, Maxwell; Luus-Powell, Wilmien J; Přikrylová, Iva
New findings on Gyrodactylus spp. parasitising African cichlids in southern Africa are presented, comprising data from Zimbabwe and South Africa. Morphometry of opisthaptoral hard parts in combination with nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences confirmed the presence of six species of Gyrodactylus von Nordmann, 1832. Three new species are described from fishes in Zimbabwe: Gyrodactylus chitandiri n. sp. from the gill arches of Coptodon rendalli (Boulenger) and Pseudocrenilabrus philander (Weber); Gyrodactylus occupatus n. sp. from the fins of Oreochromis niloticus (L.), Pharyngochromis acuticeps (Steindachner) and P. philander; and Gyrodactylus parisellei n. sp. from the fins of O. niloticus, P. philander and Tilapia sp. Gyrodactylus nyanzae Paperna, 1973 was also identified from the gills of O. niloticus and C. rendalli collected from two localities in Zimbabwe; these findings represent new host and locality records for this parasite. Gyrodactylus sturmbaueri Vanhove, Snoeks, Volckaert & Huyse, 2011 was identified from P. philander collected in South Africa and Zimbabwe thereby providing new host and locality records for this parasite. Finally, Gyrodactylus yacatli García-Vásquez, Hansen, Christison, Bron & Shinn, 2011 was collected from the fins of O. niloticus and P. philander studied in Zimbabwe; this represents the first record of this species from the continent of Africa. Notably, this study improves upon the knowledge of Gyrodactylus spp. parasitising cichlids from these southern African regions. All species studied were recorded from at least two different cichlid host species indicating trend for a wide range of Gyrodactylus hosts in Africa. Accordingly, this supports the idea of intensive host switching in the course of their evolution. PMID:27522367
Lorenz, O. Thomas; O' Connell, Martin T.; Schofield, Pamela J.
The Rio Grande cichlid (Herichthys cyanoguttatus) has been established in the Greater New Orleans Metropolitan area for at least 20 years, and its effect on native fishes is unknown. Behavioral trials were performed to determine if aggressive interactions occur between invasive H. cyanoguttatus and native bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus). When defending a territory as the resident, L. macrochirus were markedly aggressive, averaging 11.6 aggressive actions per lO-min behavioral trial. In contrast, L. macrochirus were extremely passive as invaders, with 0.5 aggressive actions per trial. Herichthys cyanoguttatus were equally aggressive as residents and as invaders, averaging 4.9 and 6.0 aggressive actions per trial, respectively. Herichthys cyanoguttatus interacted aggressively with native species whether they held territory or not, indicating that this invasive species may have fundamentally different strategies of aggression compared with native L. macrochirus. These differences may explain the continued success of H. cyanoguttatus as an invasive fish in southeastern Louisiana.
Full Text Available Extreme habitats are often characterized by reduced predation pressures, thus representing refuges for the inhabiting species. The present study was designed to investigate predator avoidance of extremophile populations of Poecilia mexicana and P. sulphuraria that either live in hydrogen sulfide-rich (sulfidic springs or cave habitats, both of which are known to have impoverished piscine predator regimes. Focal fishes that inhabited sulfidic springs showed slightly weaker avoidance reactions when presented with several naturally occurring predatory cichlids, but strongest differences to populations from non-sulfidic habitats were found in a decreased shoaling tendency with non-predatory swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii females. When comparing avoidance reactions between P. mexicana from a sulfidic cave (Cueva del Azufre and the adjacent sulfidic surface creek (El Azufre, we found only slight differences in predator avoidance, but surface fish reacted much more strongly to the non-predatory cichlid Vieja bifasciata. Our third experiment was designed to disentangle learned from innate effects of predator recognition. We compared laboratory-reared (i.e., predator-naïve and wild-caught (i.e., predator-experienced individuals of P. mexicana from a non-sulfidic river and found no differences in their reaction towards the presented predators. Overall, our results indicate (1 that predator avoidance is still functional in extremophile Poecilia spp. and (2 that predator recognition and avoidance reactions have a strong genetic basis.
Raoni Rosa Rodrigues
Full Text Available Animal coloration has many functions, and fishes are noted among vertebrates for presenting a wide variety of color patterns. Although in marine fishes the relationship between body coloration and behavioral context is well documented, there's not much information about freshwater fishes. Here we describe color patterns displayed by the dwarf cichlid Apistogramma hippolytae and suggest that these patterns are dependent on different social and behavioral settings. Field observations were conducted underwater in a pond in Central Amazonia, Brazil. We recorded six body coloration patterns related to seven different kinds of behavioral activities: foraging, resting, reproductive and agonistic displays, aggression (attacking and fleeing and parental care. Changes in coloration occur rapidly and take only a few seconds. Females on parental care exhibited a unique pattern that are more persistent and probably manifests more slowly. In the shallow and clear waters of the natural environment of this dwarf cichlid, color communication seems to constitute an efficient way to display information about individual mood, social status and reproductive readiness, contributing to minimize loss of energy in unnecessary interactions.Coloração animal tem diferentes funções, e os peixes se destacam entre os vertebrados por apresentarem uma grande diversidade de padrões de cores. Embora se conheça relativamente bem a relação entre coloração e contexto comportamental para peixes marinhos, pouco se sabe para os peixes de água doce. Nós descrevemos os padrões de coloração de um ciclídeo amazônico, Apistogramma hippolytae, e sugerimos como esses padrões são dependentes das características sociais e comportamentais. Realizamos observações subaquáticas utilizando mergulho livre em campo durante o dia em uma lagoa na Amazônia Central. Nós caracterizamos seis padrões de coloração associados a sete comportamentos diferentes: alimentação, repouso
Menezes, Rosemberg; Attayde, José Luiz; Lacerot, Gissell; Kosten, Sarian; Coimbra e Souza, Leonardo; S. Costa, Luciana; H. Van Nes, Egbert; Jeppesen, Erik
We compared the species richness and abundance of fish, zooplankton and phytoplankton in nine mesotrophic coastal shallow lakes (Northeastern Brazil) with and without the exotic predator cichlid tucunaré or ‘peacock bass’ (Cichla cf. ocellaris). We hypothesized that the introduction of tucunaré w...
The agonistic behavior of mated convict cichlids (Cichlasoma nigrofasciatum) derived from gonial germ cells which were exposed to 0 (controls), 250, 500, 1,000, or 2,000 R of X-rays was determined by counting the attacks delivered to subadult conspecifics during the first eight days after spawning. While no day effects and no interactions with sex and radiation dose were found, males were significantly more aggressive in the treatment groups than the corresponding females. The highest aggressivness appeared in F1 pairs derived from parental gonia irradiated with 250 R, and the lowest aggressiveness occurred in the 500-F1 group. These two treatment groups differed significantly from each other, whereas no further significant differences could be detected. F1 males derived from gonial X-irradiation with 750 R could not be mated successfully because they killed their own females. The changes of male aggressiveness reflect reversely the previously published results of changes in social cohesiveness of the individual cichlid fish. (author)
Melgen A. García-Lizárraga
Full Text Available The population structure and reproductive condition of the Sinaloa cichlid Cichlasoma beani from samples obtained from June 2000 to July 2001 were determined. Samples in the first week each month from the largest trader of tilapia in the Aguamilpa Reservoir in Mexico and were caught in gillnets (9.6 and 11.4 cm stretch-mesh size. Of 596 specimens, there were 427 males and 169 females; monthly sex ratio, frequency of lengths by the multinomial distribution, timing of reproduction, condition index, and size at first maturity was determined. Differences in the sex ratio and monthly totals were significant, favoring males, except for September 2000 and March 2001. From one (August 2000 to three modal groups (July 2000 and June 2001 were identified by size. There were no significant differences in standard length weight relationships by sex, which indicated that a shared model for both genders is appropriate, and isometric growth was detected. Based on the proportion of mature and partially matures fish, the main reproductive period was April through June; size at first maturity was 18.9 cm. Water temperature was not significantly related to the percentage of mature and partially matures Sinaloa cichlids or spawning. These findings provide information for regulating the Cichlasoma beani fishery in this region such minimum legal size and non-fishing period.Se determinó la estructura poblacional y condición reproductiva del cíclido de Sinaloa Cichlasoma beani desde junio de 2000 a julio de 2001. Las muestras se obtuvieron de la captura comercial de tilapia en el embalse de Aguamilpa, México durante la primera semana de cada mes. Los especímenes se capturaron con redes de enmalle (9,6 y 11,4 cm de tamaño de malla. De los 596 organismos recolectados, 427 fueron machos y 169 hembras. Se determinó la proporción de sexos mensual, grupos modales de tallas a través de una distribución multinomial, época reproductiva, índice de condición y talla
Vlahos, Nikolaos; Vasilopoulos, Michael; Mente, Eleni; Hotos, George; Katselis, George; Vidalis, Kosmas
In order to conserve and culture the cichlid fish Archocentrus nigrofasciatus, more information about its reproductive biology and its larval behavior and morphogenesis is necessary. Currently, temperatures ranging from 21 to 27 °C are used in ornamental aquaculture hatcheries. Lower temperatures are preferred to reduce the costs of water heating, and 23 °C is usually the selected temperature. However, there is limited information on culturing protocols for ornamental species and most of the information generated on this topic remains scarce. Thus, the present study examines the morphological development of Archocentrus nigrofasciatus during the yolk-sac period up to the age of 100 h post-hatching in relation to 2 temperature regimes used in ornamental aquaculture: a temperature of 27 °C (thermal optimum) and a decreased temperature of 23 °C (thermal tolerance). The results of this study suggest that the 27 °C temperature generates intense morphological changes in yolk-sac development in a shorter period. This has advantages as it reduces the time of yolk-sac larval development, and, thus, minimizes the transition phase to exogenous feeding and maximizes the efficiency at which yolk is converted into body tissues. The present paper provides necessary information to produce freshwater ornamental fish with better practices so as to increase larval survival and capitalize on time for growth. PMID:26201370
Full Text Available In this study, the occurrence of heterophyid infection in two well-known hosts of heterophyd in Egyptian lake (Manzala; the mullet, Liza auratus and the cichlid, Oreochromis niloticus was investigated. Furthermore, the potential factors that possibly affect the occurrence of the infection including host sex, length, weight and seasonal variation were considered. The pathological response of the two fish host to the infection was studied. Results showed that the prevalence, abundance and intensity of infection in the two fish host greatly affected by the factor considered in contradictory way. The responses to infection and the possible effect of the interaction between all the considered factors are discussed in details. In addition, metacercarial infection caused alterations in the histological architecture of the infected tissues and in the composition of the muscle proteins as well which was more pronounced in O. niloticus and L. auratus, respectively. In conclusion, many biological and environmental factors do affect the occurrence of heterophyid infection in addition to the anthropogenic activity. L. auratus was more susceptible to the infection as compared to O. niloticus from the same habitat.
Michael J.PAUERS; Jeffrey S.MCKINNON
Sexual selection is widely viewed as playing a central role in hapiochromine cichlid speciation.Hypothetically,once divergent mate preferences evolve among populations of these fishes,reproductive isolation follows and the populations begin to behave as different species.Various studies have examined patterns of assortative mating among species and sometimes populations,but few have examined variation in directional preferences,especially among populations of the same species.We investigated mate choice behavior in two populations of Labeotropheus fuelleborni,a Lake Malawi endemic.We test whether mating.preferences between populations are based on the same traits and in the same direction as preferences within populations.We examine the potential contributions of two classes of trait,color patterns and behaviors,to reproductive isolation.When females chose between either two males of their own population,or two from another,female preferences were generally similar (for the female population) across the two contexts.Mate choice patterns differed between (female) populations for a measure of color,but only modestly for male behavior.In a separate experiment we simultaneously offered females a male of their own population and a male from a different population.In these trials,females consistently preferred males from their own population,which were also the males that displayed more frequently than their opponents,but not necessarily those with color traits suggested to be most attractive in the previous experiment.Thus directional preferences for chroma and related aspects of color may be important when females are presented with males of otherwise similar phenotypes,but may play little role in mediating assortative mating among populations with substantially different color patterns.A preference for male behavior could play some role in speciation if males preferentially court same-population females,as we have observed for the populations studied herein.
Sone, Brice Nkwelle
Lake Barombi Mbo is an isolated oligotrophic lake situated in the volcanic range of West Cameroon and home to several endangered endemic cichlids. A fieldwork was carried out at the lake where water and fish samples were collected as part of an investigation. The aim of this study was to investigate (i) whether studied trace metals were present at levels exceeding ambient water criteria, (ii) link uptake of trace metals in gills and liver of fish to water chemistry, (iii) ac...
Moravec, František; Diggles, B.
Roč. 114, č. 5 (2015), s. 1929-1932. ISSN 0932-0113 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : parasitic nematode * Dracunculoidea * cichlid fish * ovary * Amazon River basin * Brazil Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 2.098, year: 2014
Full Text Available We surveyed the fish fauna of Lac Tseny, in the Sofia Region of northwestern Madagascar, during October 2010 by observing commercial catches and targeted netting of areas used by endemic species. We recorded seven native fish species at the lake, including three endemic cichlids, a herring and a catfish. We confirmed the continued survival of the Critically Endangered Paretroplus menarambo, as well as the presence of a Paretroplus taxon that may be new to science. The commercial fishery in the lake is sustained by introduced tilapiines and the native Savagella robusta. The three endemic cichlids (Paretroplus spp. were not targeted by commercial fishermen, but when caught in small numbers were retained for domestic consumption. Submerged trees in the west of the lake restrict fishing with nets and probably provide important habitat for P. menarambo. Priority next steps at the lake include (i additional surveys and biological studies of the endemic fish species and the Critically Endangered Madagascar big-headed turtle, Erymnochelys madagascariensis, (ii clarification of the taxonomic status of Paretroplus cf. kieneri and, should it prove a new taxon, its formal scientific description, and (iii continued engagement with fishing communities and authorities to promote practices that benefit livelihoods and the survival of threatened fish species.
Ota, Kazutaka; Hori, Michio; Kohda, Masanori
To determine whether the appearance of a reproductively parasitic tactic varies, and how this variation affects territorial males of the Lake Tanganyika cichlid fish Telmatochromis vittatus, we examined the reproductive ecology of territorial males in Mtondwe and compared it with that of a neighboring Wonzye population, where nest density differs from that at Mtondwe. In Wonzye, with high nest density, male tactics change with their body size from a territorial to a non-territorial parasitic tactic called piracy in which they conquer several nests defended by territorial males and take over the nests while females are spawning. These "pirate" males could decrease the costs incurred by travelling among nests by exclusively targeting aggregations of nests in close proximity while avoiding separate nests. Territorial males in Wonzye sacrifice the potential higher attractiveness offered by large nests and instead compete for nests farther from neighbors on which pirates less frequently intrude. In contrast, the Mtondwe population had lower nest density and piracy was absent. Given that the success of piracy depends on the close proximity of nests, nest density is likely responsible for the observed variation in the occurrence of piracy between the two populations. Furthermore, in Mtondwe, territorial males competed for larger nests and were smaller than the territorial males in Wonzye. Thus, this lower nest density may free territorial males from the selection pressures for increased size caused by both defense against nest piracy and the need to develop into pirates as they grow.
Ousman, Abakar; Félix, Bilong Bilong Charles; Thomas, Njiné; Abraham, Fomena
Myxosporean parasites of two freshwater Tilapia species from the Chari River, Chad Republic, Oreochromis niloticus and Sarotherodon galilaeus, were investigated from November 2001 to October 2002. A total of 360 specimens per Cichlid species were examined. Eleven parasite species were found in both cases with different prevalences. Myxobolus agolus, M. brachysporus, M. clarii, M. cichlidarum, M. heterosporus, M. tilapiae and M. camerounensis in O. niloticus) appeared common while M. equatorialis, M. nyongana (and M. camerounensis in S. galilaeus) were secondary; lastly M. israelensis (and M. kainjiae in O. niloticus) were rare. The gills, fins, eyes and teguments were preferential locations of cysts building pathogens while the kidneys then the gall bladder were most commonly infected by myxosporean spores. In the Chari ecosystem, no significant host sex and size effects were found for the parasite cystic load. A clear seasonal occurrence was observed for most of these pathogens. In the view of pathogenic control, this study raised the necessity in a farm fish station to identify the most important myxosporean species and the period of their potential demographic explosion. PMID:19069850
Pasco-Viel, Emmanuel; Yang, Lei; Veran, Monette; Balter, Vincent; Mayden, Richard L.; Laudet, Vincent; Viriot, Laurent
Evolutionary radiations, especially adaptive radiations, have been widely studied but mainly for recent events such as in cichlid fish or Anolis lizards. Here, we investigate the radiation of the subfamily Cyprininae, which includes more than 1300 species and is estimated to have originated from Southeast Asia around 55 Ma. In order to decipher a potential adaptive radiation, within a solid phylogenetic framework, we investigated the trophic apparatus, and especially the pharyngeal dentition,...
Andréa Soares de Araújo; Wallace Silva do Nascimento; Maria Emília Yamamoto; Sathyabama Chellappa
The reproductive biology and the gonadal development cycle of the Neotropical cichlid fish, Crenicichla menezesi, is described. This species exhibits sexual dimorphism only during the spawning season. First sexual maturity of females is attained earlier than the males. Both macroscopic and histological investigations of ovaries and testes revealed four stages of gonadal maturation. Mean batch fecundity of females was 372 (±10,41) of mature oocytes. This species is a partial spawner, with an e...
Introduction of exotic fish species especially the Nile perch Lates niloticus, is believed to be responsible for the decline of fish species diversity in lakes Victoria, Kyoga and Nabugabo.About 60% of the haplochromine cichlids are thought to have become extinct from L. Victoria due to predation by the Nile perch. However there are many lakes satelite to the lakes Victoria and Kyoga basins which still have fish fauna similar to that of the main lakes. many of the satellite lakes are separate...
Full Text Available Abstract Background Cichlid fishes are notorious for their wealth of intra- and interspecific colour pattern diversity. In Lake Tanganyika, the endemic genus Tropheus represents the most impressive example for geographic variation in the pattern and hue of integument colouration, but the taxonomy of the over 100 mostly allopatric colour morphs remains to a large degree unresolved. Previous studies of mitochondrial DNA sequence data revealed polyphyly of the six nominally described species and complex phylogeographic patterns influenced by lake level fluctuations and population admixture, and suggested the parallel evolution of similar colour patterns in divergent evolutionary lineages. A gene tree of a rapidly radiating group may be subject to incomplete and stochastic lineage sorting, and to overcome this problem we used multi-locus, nuclear AFLP data in comparison with mtDNA sequences to study diversification, migration and introgression in Tropheus colour morphs in Lake Tanganyika. Results Significant incongruence between phylogenetic reconstructions from mitochondrial and AFLP data suggested incomplete sorting of mitochondrial haplotypes as well as frequent introgression between differentiated lineages. In contrast to the mitochondrial phylogeny, the AFLP phenogram was largely congruent with species classifications, colour pattern similarities, and in many cases also with the current geographic distribution of populations, and did not produce evidence of convergent colour pattern evolution. Homoplasy in the AFLP data was used to identify populations that were strongly affected by introgression. Conclusion Different evolutionary processes were distinguished by the combination of mitochondrial and AFLP data. Mitochondrial phylogeographic patterns retained signals of large-scale migration events triggered by historical, major lake level fluctuations, whereas AFLP data indicated genetic cohesion among local groups of populations resulting from
Seehausen, Ole; Koetsier, Egbert; Schneider, Maria Victoria; Chapman, Lauren J.; Colin A Chapman; Knight, Mairi E.; Turner, George F.; van Alphen, Jacques J.M; Bills, Roger
Phylogenetic analyses based on mitochondrial (mt) DNA have indicated that the cichlid species flock of the Lake Victoria region is derived from a single ancestral species found in East African rivers, closely related to the ancestor of the Lake Malawi cichlid species flock. The Lake Victoria flock contains ten times less mtDNA variation than the Lake Malawi radiation, consistent with current estimates of the ages of the lakes. We present results of a phylogenetic investigation using nuclear (...
Schofield, P.J.; Loftus, W.F.; Brown, M.E.
In this study, the hypoxia tolerance of three Everglades fishes, two native centrarchids (Lepomis gulosus and Lepomis marginatus) and a recently introduced cichlid (Hemichromis letourneuxi), were documented. Aquatic surface respiration (ASR) thresholds were lowest for H. letourneuxi, followed by L. gulosus, then L. marginatus. The ASR thresholds for L. marginatus were within ranges reported for small, freshwater tropical fishes, while those for L. gulosus were similar to swamp-adapted fishes. For H. letourneuxi, ASR thresholds were some of the lowest reported. All three species showed excellent tolerance of low dissolved oxygen levels when allowed access to the surface. When denied surface access, L. marginatus lost equilibrium at a higher oxygen tension than the other species. Overall, although all species easily tolerated hypoxia, H. letourneuxi appeared to be best equipped to deal with hypoxia, followed by L. gulosus, then L. marginatus. Hemichromis letourneuxi also exhibited more aggressive behaviours than the centrarchids. These results suggest that hypoxia is not likely to prevent H. letourneuxi from exploiting the seasonally inundated wetlands of south Florida while expanding its range there.
Schuetz, Dolores; Ocana, Sabine Wirtz; Maan, martine E.; Taborsky, Michael
Colonial species breed in densely aggregated territories containing no resources other than nest sites. This behaviour is usually explained by natural selection, for instance through benefits resulting from reduced predation risk. An alternative hypothesis suggests that, as in lek breeding systems,
Full Text Available Abstract Background With about 120 colour morphs currently assigned to six nominal species, the genus Tropheus is an ideal model to study evolutionary divergence of populations in allopatry. The morphology of Tropheus has been described as relatively static, but reproductive constraints are sexually dimorphic due to mouthbrooding in females. We analysed phenotypic variation in six populations of T. moorii and one population of T. polli using geometric morphometrics to assess morphological differences among sexes in relation to the differentiation of populations and species. Results The mean shapes differed significantly between sexes, populations, and species even though within-sex variation exceeded the divergence among populations. The first principal component of Procrustes shape coordinates revealed differences between populations and species in mouth position and ventral head shape. The second principal component reflected sex-specific shape differences, mainly comprising a relatively larger female viscerocranium and, in particular, a larger buccal area. While shape variation between populations and between sexes was primarily located in the cranial region, within-sex variation was relatively uniform across all landmarks. Conclusions Deviations of the between-population and between-sex pattern of shape variation from that within sex indicate that the differences in head shape likely result from both adaptations to female mouthbrooding and population-specific foraging strategies.
Trainor, Brian C.; Hofmann, Hans A.
Somatostatin is a neuropeptide best known for its inhibitory effects on growth hormone secretion and has recently been implicated in the control of social behavior. Several somatostatin receptor subtypes have been identified in vertebrates, but the functional basis for this diversity is still unclear. Here we investigate the expression levels of the somatostatin prepropeptide and two of its receptors, sstR2, and sstR3, in the brains of socially dominant and subordinate A. burtoni males using ...
Dijkstra, Peter D.; Hekman, Renske; Schulz, Rudiger W.; Groothuis, Ton G. G.
The nature of the costs maintaining honesty of sexual signalling in inter- and intrasexual interactions remains a contentious issue. For carotenoid-based colour ornaments, it has been hypothesized that the honesty of the signal is enforced when carotenoid allocation to colour expression is traded of
How the exuberant diversity on our planet arose is still a question of central interest in biology. Rapidly diversifying species complexes that experience adaptive radiation have always been prime study targets to infer the underlying mechanisms of divergence. Young species-rich systems that display ongoing diversification in multiple replicates are of particular relevance, because different stages of divergence are likely to be found, ranging from incipient speciation to stable species assem...
Schaafsma, Sara M.; Groothuis, Ton G. G.
Lateralization is a fundamental principle in the organization of brain and behaviour in humans and nonhuman animals. To what extent lateralization is, in addition to genetic factors, under the influence of testosterone, which would also explain sex differences in laterality, is the topic of a long-standing debate. This debate is partly hampered by confusion between organizational and activating effects of testosterone. Here we focused on activating effects, less often studied than organizatio...
Musilová, Zuzana; Říčan, O.; Říčanová, Š.; Janšta, P.; Gahura, O.; Novák, J.
Roč. 65, č. 3 (2015), s. 333-350. ISSN 1864-5755 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : Andean uplift * Andinoacara * Mesoheros Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 0.593, year: 2014
Mendoza-Franco, Edgar F.; Scholz, Tomáš; Rozkošná, Petra
Roč. 96, č. 3 (2010), s. 491-498. ISSN 0022-3395 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC522 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : NEOTROPICAL MONOGENEA * ANCYROCEPHALINAE * PROPOSAL * GILLS * TREMATODES * TELEOSTEI Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine Impact factor: 1.208, year: 2010
Brungs, Sonja; Hendrik Anken, Ralf; Li, Xiao-Yan; Hauslage, Jens; Wang, Gaohong; Liu, Yongding; Hilbig, Reinhard; Hemmersbach, Ruth
Stimulus dependence is a general feature of all developing sensory systems. Concerning the vestibular organ of fish, it has been shown earlier that the growth of inner ear otoliths of developing Cichlid fish (Oreochromis mossambicus) and Zebrafish (Danio rerio) is slowed down by increased gravity (hypergravity) as an adaptation. Several studies proposed that otolith growth actively is adjusted via a feedback mechanism to produce a test mass of the appropriate physical capacity. Applying diminished gravity such as microgravity during spaceflight yielded an opposite effect, i.e., larger than normal otoliths in swordtails Xiphophorus helleri. Since there are no data on spaceflown early larval stages of the Cichlid fish and the Zebrafish available, these model organisms were subjected to simulated weightlessness using a submersed clinostat with one axis of rotation (O. mossambicus) and rotating-wall vessels (RWVs; O. mossambicus was maintained within a submersed RWV, which was recently developed at DLR, whereas D. rerio was kept within a modified RWV, developed by NASA). Developmental stages were subjected to clinorotation (60 rpm) and wall vessel rotation (Cichlid fish: 44 rpm; Zebrafish: 12.5 rpm; at these speeds, the larvae did neither sediment nor were they centrifuged away from the center of the RWVs) at a point of time when inner ear otolith mineralisation began. The experimental runs were discontinued when the animals hatched (O. mossambicus, stage 12, reached after 2-3 days at 22° C) or when they began to actively move within the devices (D. rerio, after 6 days at 28° C). After clinostat exposure, both utricular and saccular otoliths (Lapilli and Sagittae, respectively) of the Cichlids were significantly larger as compared to otoliths from the 1g controls. A similar result was obtained after wall vessel rotation for 3 and 6 days of the Zebrafish. These results support the idea that a feedback mechanism correlates the gravity level with the physical capacity
Brungs, Sonja; Hauslage, Jens; Hilbig, Reinhard; Hemmersbach, Ruth; Anken, Ralf
Stimulus dependence is a general feature of developing sensory systems. It has been shown earlier that the growth of inner ear heavy stones (otoliths) of late-stage Cichlid fish ( Oreochromis mossambicus) and Zebrafish ( Danio rerio) is slowed down by hypergravity, whereas microgravity during space flight yields an opposite effect, i.e. larger than 1 g otoliths, in Swordtail ( Xiphophorus helleri) and in Cichlid fish late-stage embryos. These and related studies proposed that otolith growth is actively adjusted via a feedback mechanism to produce a test mass of the appropriate physical capacity. Using ground-based techniques to apply simulated weightlessness, long-term clinorotation (CR; exposure on a fast-rotating Clinostat with one axis of rotation) led to larger than 1 g otoliths in late-stage Cichlid fish. Larger than normal otoliths were also found in early-staged Zebrafish embryos after short-term Wall Vessel Rotation (WVR; also regarded as a method to simulate weightlessness). These results are basically in line with the results obtained on Swordtails from space flight. Thus, the growth of fish inner ear otoliths seems to be an appropriate parameter to assess the quality of "simulated weightlessness" provided by a particular simulation device. Since CR and WVR are in worldwide use to simulate weightlessness conditions on ground using small-sized specimens, we were prompted to directly compare the effects of CR and WVR on otolith growth using developing Cichlids as model organism. Animals were simultaneously subjected to CR and WVR from a point of time when otolith primordia had begun to calcify both within the utricle (gravity perception) and the saccule (hearing); the respective otoliths are the lapilli and the sagittae. Three such runs were subsequently carried out, using three different batches of fish. The runs were discontinued when the animals began to hatch. In the course of all three runs performed, CR led to larger than normal lapilli, whereas WVR
López-Fernández, Hernán; Honeycutt, Rodney L; Winemiller, Kirk O
Nucleotide sequences from the mitochondrial ND4 gene and the nuclear RAG2 gene were used to derive the most extensive molecular phylogeny to date for the Neotropical cichlid subfamily Geophaginae. Previous hypotheses of relationships were tested in light of these new data and a synthesis of all existing molecular information was provided. Novel phylogenetic findings included support for : (1) a 'Big Clade' containing the genera Geophagus sensu lato, Gymnogeophagus, Mikrogeophagus, Biotodoma, Crenicara, and Dicrossus; (2) a clade including the genera Satanoperca, Apistogramma, Apistogrammoides, and Taeniacara; and (3) corroboration for Kullander's clade Acarichthyini. ND4 demonstrated saturation effects at the third code position and lineage-specific rate heterogeneity, both of which influenced phylogeny reconstruction when only equal weighted parsimony was employed. Both branch lengths and internal branch tests revealed extremely short basal nodes that add support to the idea that geophagine cichlids have experienced an adaptive radiation sensu Schluter that involved ecomorphological specializations and life history diversification. PMID:15579395
Tsuboi, Masahito; González-Voyer, Alejandro; Kolm, N.
Abstract Background Phenotypic integration among different anatomical parts of the head is a common phenomenon across vertebrates. Interestingly, despite centuries of research into the factors that contribute to the existing variation in brain size among vertebrates, little is known about the role of phenotypic integration in brain size diversification. Here we used geometric morphometrics on the morphologically diverse Tanganyikan cichlids to investigate phenotypic integration across key mor...
Julia Schwarzer; Bernhard Misof; Ifuta, Seraphin N.; Schliewen, Ulrich K.
Most freshwater diversity is arguably located in networks of rivers and streams, but, in contrast to lacustrine systems riverine radiations, are largely understudied. The extensive rapids of the lower Congo River is one of the few river stretches inhabited by a locally endemic cichlid species flock as well as several species pairs, for which we provide evidence that they have radiated in situ. We use more that 2,000 AFLP markers as well as multilocus sequence datasets to reconstruct their ori...
Hirschenhauser, Katharina; Canário, Adelino V. M.; Ros, Albert F. H.; Taborsky, Michael; Oliveira, Rui Filipe
We previously investigated the androgen responsiveness of males to simulated partner and territory intrusions in five African cichlid species (Neolamprologus pulcher, Lamprologus callipterus, Tropheus moorii, Pseudosimochromis curvifrons, Oreochromis mossambicus; Hirschenhauser et al., 2004). Here we re-analysed data on 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT) levels in holding water to compare the free (presumably from the gills) and conjugated (presumably from urine and faeces) 11-KT frac...
Maarten Van Steenberge
Full Text Available The unparalleled biodiversity of Lake Tanganyika (Africa has fascinated biologists for over a century; its unique cichlid communities are a preferred model for evolutionary research. Although species delineation is, in most cases, relatively straightforward, higher-order classifications were shown not to agree with monophyletic groups. Here, traditional morphological methods meet their limitations. A typical example are the tropheine cichlids currently belonging to Simochromis and Pseudosimochromis. The affiliations of these widespread and abundant cichlids are poorly understood. Molecular work suggested that genus and species boundaries should be revised. Moreover, previous morphological results indicated that intraspecific variation should be considered to delineate species in Lake Tanganyika cichlids. We review the genera Simochromis and Pseudosimochromis using an integrative approach. Besides a morphometric study and a barcoding approach, monogenean Cichlidogyrus (Platyhelminthes: Ancyrocephalidae gill parasites, often highly species-specific, are used as complementary markers. Six new species are described. Cichlidogyrus raeymaekersi sp. nov., C. muterezii sp. nov. and C. banyankimbonai sp. nov. infect S. diagramma. Cichlidogyrus georgesmertensi sp. nov. was found on S. babaulti and S. pleurospilus, C. franswittei sp. nov. on both S. marginatus and P. curvifrons and C. frankwillemsi sp. nov. only on P. curvifrons. As relatedness between Cichlidogyrus species usually reflects relatedness between hosts, we considered Simochromis monotypic because the three Cichlidogyrus species found on S. diagramma belonged to a different morphotype than those found on the other Simochromis. The transfer of S. babaulti, S. marginatus, S. pleurospilus and S. margaretae to Pseudosimochromis was justified by the similarity of their Cichlidogyrus fauna and the intermediate morphology of S. margaretae. Finally parasite data also supported the synonymy between S
Quérouil, Sophie; Diaz, A. V.; Garcia-Davila, C.; Romer, U.; Renno, Jean-François
The South American genus of Cichlid fish Apistogramma comprises over 100 species, most of which are difficult to identify. There is a need to clarify species limits and evolutionary relationships, conduct fine-scale phylogeographic revision of some species complexes, and collect information on population conservation status. In addition, recent studies suggest that female mate choice may lead to reproductive isolation and potentially to sympatric speciation in some species. Highly variable bi...
Tsuboi, Masahito; Gonzalez-Voyer, Alejandro; Kolm, Niclas
Functional coupling, where a single morphological trait performs multiple functions, is a universal feature of organismal design. Theory suggests that functional coupling may constrain the rate of phenotypic evolution, yet empirical tests of this hypothesis are rare. In fish, the evolutionary transition from guarding the eggs on a sandy/rocky substrate (i.e. substrate guarding) to mouthbrooding introduces a novel function to the craniofacial system and offers an ideal opportunity to test the ...
E. F. Mendoza-Franco
Full Text Available Cichlids, Cichlasoma urophthalmus, collected in a flooded quarry in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, from January through June 1992, had high levels of infection with the ancyrocephaline Sciadicleithrum mexicanum (Monogena: Dactylogyridade in all montlhly samples. Neither occurrence nor maturation of the worms eshibited any pronounced monthly fluctuation. The infection rate was found to be sizedependent, greater in longer fish. The worms occurred on primary lamellae of gill filaments of all arches, with lower numbers of parasites attached to the fourth gill arch. Otherwise, there was no significant site preference of worms. Only minor histopathological changes were found at the sites of attachment, and these were restricted to the epithelial cells of the primary lamellae of thegill filaments. The lack of seasonal periodicity in this tropical monogenean is compared to seasonal cycles typical of temperate species.
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Bunje Paul ME
Full Text Available Abstract Background Speciation often occurs in complex or uncertain temporal and spatial contexts. Processes such as reinforcement, allopatric divergence, and assortative mating can proceed at different rates and with different strengths as populations diverge. The Central American Midas cichlid fish species complex is an important case study for understanding the processes of speciation. Previous analyses have demonstrated that allopatric processes led to species formation among the lakes of Nicaragua as well as sympatric speciation that is occurring within at least one crater lake. However, since speciation is an ongoing process and sampling genetic diversity of such lineages can be biased by collection scheme or random factors, it is important to evaluate the robustness of conclusions drawn on individual time samples. Results In order to assess the validity and reliability of inferences based on different genetic samples, we have analyzed fish from several lakes in Nicaragua sampled at three different times over 16 years. In addition, this time series allows us to analyze the population genetic changes that have occurred between lakes, where allopatric speciation has operated, as well as between different species within lakes, some of which have originated by sympatric speciation. Focusing on commonly used genetic markers, we have analyzed both DNA sequences from the complete mitochondrial control region as well as nuclear DNA variation at ten microsatellite loci from these populations, sampled thrice in a 16 year time period, to develop a robust estimate of the population genetic history of these diversifying lineages. Conclusion The conclusions from previous work are well supported by our comprehensive analysis. In particular, we find that the genetic diversity of derived crater lake populations is lower than that of the source population regardless of when and how each population was sampled. Furthermore, changes in various estimates of
BAYONA, John D. R.
Fishes in the inshore waters of Lake Tanganyika were sampled in the Kigoma Region between June 1984 and May 1988, using a beach-seine. This study collected 78 fish species in 14 different families. Cichlids made up 55.1% of the identified species. All but 12 of these species were identified in the previous collections at Karago, Mkuyu and Myako by Japanese researchers. Therefore, from the combined collections, 132 species of fish (19 fluviatile, 75 littoral, 24 benthic, 8 pelagic and 6 bathyp...
McLaughlin, Kirsty Elizabeth; Kunc, Hansjoerg P
Anthropogenic noise can affect behaviour across a wide range of species in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. However, behaviours might not be affected in isolation. Therefore, a more holistic approach investigating how environmental stressors, such as noise pollution, affect different behaviours in concert is necessary. Using tank-based noise exposure experiments, we tested how changes in the acoustic environment affect the behaviour of the cichlid Amatitlania nigrofasciata. We found that exposure to anthropogenic noise affected a couple of behaviours: an increase in sheltering was accompanied by a decrease in foraging. Our results highlight the multiple negative effects of an environmental stressor on an individual's behaviour. PMID:25937344