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Improved resolution and a novel phylogeny for the Neotropical triplefin blennies (Teleostei: Tripterygiidae)

TitleImproved resolution and a novel phylogeny for the Neotropical triplefin blennies (Teleostei: Tripterygiidae)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsMiller EC, Lin H.C, Hastings PA
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Date Published2016/03
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number1055-7903
Accession NumberWOS:000371193200007
Keywordsbiogeography; Concatenation; differentiation; eastern pacific; fishes; genetic; Hidden support; life-history; mixed models; population-structure; rapid radiation; Shorefishes; species-tree; Tripterygiidae; tropical; tropical eastern pacific

The triplefin blennies (Teleostei: Tripterygiidae) are a diverse group of small-bodied benthic fishes associated with rocky or coral reefs. The Neotropics contain four genera and 26 species, many of which have only been recently described. A recent molecular phylogeny (Lin and Hastings, 2013) contrasts with previous phylogenies based on morphology in recovering the four Neotropical genera as a single Glade with respect to the Indo-Pacific genera; however, relationships within and among genera were poorly resolved. This study reports a novel topology based on an expanded seven-loci molecular dataset. Individual gene trees have poor resolution, but concatenated analyses show strong support for most nodes, likely due to emergent support from concatenation. Consistent with Lin and Hastings (2013), three of the Neotropical genera, Axoclinus, Enneanectes, and Crocodilichthys, form a well-supported Glade, but relationships of the fourth (Lepidonectes) are not confidently resolved. The monophyly of Axoclinus is well supported, but Enneanectes is paraphyletic with the inclusion of Axoclinus and Crocodilichthys. Improved resolution allows for reinterpretation of the biogeography of the Neotropical Tripterygiidae. Broader taxon sampling is still necessary for resolving the relationships within Tripterygiidae globally. (C) 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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