n African Zoology - Morphometric and genetic differentiation of two populations in Lake Victoria

Volume 40, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X
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<I>Labeo victorianus</I>, a fish species endemic to the Lake Victoria basin, once supported a commercial fishery. Since the 1950s landings have, however, declined due to overfishing. Recent surveys have found only two extant populations in Uganda; one in the Sio River and a second in the Kagera River. Fish from the Kagera River populations are significantly larger and exhibit differences in their reproductive biology. Using both genetic (control region sequences of mitochondrial DNA) and morphometric (truss and non-truss) characters, we investigated the level of genetic and morphological distinctiveness of the two remaining populations. Analyses of the mitochondrial control region sequence data (446 base pairs) did not show clear genetic differentiation between the populations (F&lt;sub&gt;ST&lt;/sub&gt; =-0.002, P > 0.05). Nonetheless, several private haplotypes were observed (16 haplotypes out of a total of 19) suggesting that a substantial amount of genetic distinctiveness exists between the two populations. Principal component analysis of twenty truss and nine non-truss variables, and heteroscedastic <I>t-</I>tests on all but one measurement, indicated that 'size' rather than 'shape' separate out fish from the two rivers. There was, therefore, a substantial degree of congruence between genetic and morphological data. These results have been interpreted in light of the recent population history of <I>L. victorianus&lt;/I&gt; in Lake Victoria.

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