Variation in Vertebral Number in Galaxiid Fishes, How Fishes Swim and a Possible Reason for Pleomerism

Variation in Vertebral Number in Galaxiid Fishes, How Fishes Swim and a Possible Reason for... The number of vertebrae in fishes is widely variable, with this variation having connections to phyletic position, geography, various environmental factors such as temperature and salinity, biome occupied and life history pattern. Variation is sometimes a response to environment, sometimes explicitly adaptive and probably often both. Swimming mode is likely to be influenced by body flexibility, which in turn is influenced by vertebral counts. Since vertebral number is fixed early in ontogeny, there is a predictive element in the ‘choice’ of vertebral number during development that affects later adaptiveness. Pleomerism, the relationship between vertebral number and body size across the diversity of fishes, may be driven by the square/cube relationships between length, cross-sectional area and volume. Pleomerism in diadromous galaxiid fishes probably reflects adaptive advantages achieved during marine juvenile life and in non-diadromous species may reflect the size at which mid-water, shoaling juveniles become to benthic, cryptic, within-substrate behaviours. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries Springer Journals

Variation in Vertebral Number in Galaxiid Fishes, How Fishes Swim and a Possible Reason for Pleomerism

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Life Sciences; Freshwater & Marine Ecology; Zoology
ISSN
0960-3166
eISSN
1573-5184
D.O.I.
10.1023/B:RFBF.0000033121.97066.c1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The number of vertebrae in fishes is widely variable, with this variation having connections to phyletic position, geography, various environmental factors such as temperature and salinity, biome occupied and life history pattern. Variation is sometimes a response to environment, sometimes explicitly adaptive and probably often both. Swimming mode is likely to be influenced by body flexibility, which in turn is influenced by vertebral counts. Since vertebral number is fixed early in ontogeny, there is a predictive element in the ‘choice’ of vertebral number during development that affects later adaptiveness. Pleomerism, the relationship between vertebral number and body size across the diversity of fishes, may be driven by the square/cube relationships between length, cross-sectional area and volume. Pleomerism in diadromous galaxiid fishes probably reflects adaptive advantages achieved during marine juvenile life and in non-diadromous species may reflect the size at which mid-water, shoaling juveniles become to benthic, cryptic, within-substrate behaviours.

Journal

Reviews in Fish Biology and FisheriesSpringer Journals

Published: Jan 15, 2005

References

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