Unusual number of pectoral fin rays in an Icelandic population of threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) recently isolated in freshwater

Bjarni K. Kristjánsson*, Skúli Skúlason, David L.G. Noakes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Threespine stickleback most often have 10 pectoral fin rays, and it seems to be a highly canalized trait. We observed an unusually high frequency of stickleback with 11 pectoral fin rays in a population recently isolated from the marine environment in a freshwater lagoon in Iceland. These new morphologies may be beneficial for the fish in the new habitat but may disappear because of strong canalizing selection for the typical 10 pectoral fin rays.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-384
Number of pages6
JournalEvolutionary Ecology
Volume18
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank G.Á. Ólafsdóttir and L. Doucette for their valuable help with field sampling. We want to thank Andrea Bergmann Halldórsdóttir for counting pectoral fin rays, and M. Bell, J. Sturlaugsson, B.R. Hansen, T. Tunney, H. Thorarensen, B. Jónsson and two anonymous referee for useful comments and discussion. The aquaculture company Hvurslax e.hf. gave permission for the sampling. The Icelandic Research Council and NSERC Canada generously funded this study. The animal care committee at Hólar College approved all sampling.

Other keywords

  • Divergence
  • Isolation
  • Rapid evolution

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