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Title: Shape and size variation: growth and development of the dusky grouper (Epinephelus marginatus Lowe, 1834)
Authors: Russo, Tommaso
Pulcini, Domitilla
Bruner, Emiliano
Cataudella, Stefano ‎
Keywords: Ecomorphology;Ontogeny;Larval ecology;Geometric morphometrics
Issue Date: Jan-2009
Publisher: Wiley
Citation: Journal of Morphology, 2009, 270 (1), 83-96
Abstract: Demersal fishes have complex life cycles that involve an ontogenetic change in morphology, physiology, and behavior, as their pelagic larval stages colonize benthic habitats. The developmental transition between larvae and juveniles leads to very complex processes of morphogenesis and differentiation. These processes primarily determine changes in external morphology, which is shaped by selective pressures to optimize performance for basic activities such as swimming, escape from predators, and feeding. Fishes have provided fertile grounds for ecomorphological investigations throughout ontogeny, as the role of changing morphology in inducing ontogenetic niche shifts is not always clear. In this framework, some studies have demonstrated that certain species undergo gradual changes, whereas other species experience threshold effects in their ecomorphological relationships during ontogeny. In this study, the intraspecific allometry of the dusky grouper was examined. Geometric morphometric tools were used to quantify shape changes through the development, and a modular approach was also applied to analyze the pattern of covariation between three distinct blocks (head, trunk, and tail). For this purpose, a two‐block Partial Least Square was computed. This method reveals that the pattern of changes in the overall body shape is the result of the modularized changes of these blocks.
ISSN: 0362-2525
DOI: 10.1002/jmor.10674
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Type: Article
Appears in Collections:Paleobiología

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