Master's program "Geobiology and Paleobiology"

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New osteological and morphological data of four species of Aphaniops

This study is based on the master thesis of the first author, Eleni A. Charmpila. It describes new morphological characters to distinguish closely related fish species. – Published in Journal of Applied Ichthyology


Charmpila EA, Teimori A, Freyhof J, Weissenbacher A, Reichenbacher B (2020). New osteological and morphological data of four species of Aphaniops (Teleostei; Aphaniidae). Journal of Applied Ichtyology 00: 1– 13.

The full text of this paper is available here.

Aphaniops dispar, widespread around the Arabian Peninsula, was recently separated in four species (A. dispar, A. hormuzensis, A. kruppi, A. stoliczkanus) by molecular results and colour patterns, but the morphological differences are small and call for more studies. Here we show that differences in skeleton and median fin osteology occur between the four species. This was a surprising result as the studied bone structures have not been known to be useful in species diagnosis of killifishes. Our study also highlights that state-of-the-art methods in X-raying and improved staining procedures assist in the discrimination of superficially similar species.