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Discovery of Two New Astyanax Cavefish Localities Leads to Further Understanding of the Species Biogeography

Abstract : The Astyanax species complex has two morphs: a blind, depigmented morph which inhabits caves in México and an eyed, pigmented surface-dwelling morph. The eyed morph can also be found in a few caves, sometimes hybridizing with the cave morph. This species complex has arguably become the most prominent model system among cave organisms for the study of evolutionary development and genomics. Before this study, 32 caves were known to be inhabited by the cave morph, 30 of them within the El Abra region. The purpose of this study was to conduct new surveys of the area and to assess some unconfirmed reports of caves presumably inhabited by troglomorphic fish. We describe two new localities, Sótano del Toro #2 and Sótano de La Calera. These two caves comprise a single hydrologic system together with the previously described cave of Sótano del Toro. The system is inhabited by a mixed population of troglomorphic, epigeomorphic, and presumably hybrid fish. Furthermore, Astyanax cavefish and the mysid shrimp Spelaeomysis quinterensis show a phylogeographic convergence that supports the notion that the central Sierra de El Abra is a biogeographical region that has influenced the evolutionary history of its aquatic community across species. The presumptive location of the boundaries of this biogeographical region are identified.
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Submitted on : Friday, November 5, 2021 - 3:57:41 PM
Last modification on : Monday, August 8, 2022 - 5:38:05 PM
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Luis Espinasa, Claudia Patricia Ornelas-García, Laurent Legendre, Sylvie Rétaux, Alexandra Best, et al.. Discovery of Two New Astyanax Cavefish Localities Leads to Further Understanding of the Species Biogeography. Diversity, MDPI, 2020, 12 (10), pp.368. ⟨10.3390/d12100368⟩. ⟨hal-03037496⟩



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