Morphometric and isozyme confirmation for species level divergence between Puntius dorsalis (Pisces: Cyprinidae) and its presumed red-fin variety in Sri Lanka

K. B. Suneetha Gunawickrama, H. G. B. N. Damayanthi


Isozyme and morphological variation provide evidence for species-level divergence between Puntius dorsalis and the red-fin variety, presumed to be conspecific to P. dorsalis, thus warrant the recognition of the P. dorsalis like red-fin variety in Sri Lanka as a separate phylogenetic taxon, hitherto undescribed. Idh, Mdh-1 and Pgm isozymes display fixed allelic differences between the two varieties indicating reproductive isolation and species-level divergence. In addition to the presence of 3½ transverse scale rows above lateral line (vs. 4½ in P. dorsalis) which is a distinctive autaphomorphy, the snout is significantly longer in the red-fin variety (30.3%HL vs. 22.6%HL of P. dorsalis).

Full Text:



Avise JC (1994) Molecular markers, natural history and evolution. Chapman & Hall Inc, NewYork

Bhat A (2003) Diversity and composition of freshwater fishes in river systems of central western Ghats, India. Environ Biol Fish 68:25-38

Davis JI, Nixon KC (1992) Populations, genetic variation, and the delimitation of phylogenetic species. Syst Biol 41:421-435

Deraniyagala PEP (1952) A coloured atlas of some vertebrates from Ceylon. Vol. 1: Fishes. National Museum of Ceylon, Colombo

De Silva SS, Abery NW, Nguyen TTT (2007) Endemic freshwater finfish of Asia: distribution and conservation status. Divers Distrib 13:172-184

Elliott NG, Haskard K, Koslow JA (1995) Morphometric analysis of orange roughy (Haplostethus atlanticus) off the continental slope of southern Australia. J Fish Biol 46:202-220

Gunawickrama K.B.S. (2007). Morphological heterogeneity and population differentiation in the green chromide Etroplus suratensis Pisces: Cichlidae) in Sri Lanka. Ruhuna Journal of Science 2: 71-80.

Gusmão J, Lazaoski C, Solé-Cava AM (2000) A new species of Penaeus (Crustacea: Penaeidae) revealed by allozyme and cytochrome oxidase I analyses. Mar. Biol. 137:435-446

Jayaram KC (1999) The freshwater fishes of the Indian region. Narendra Publishing House, Delhi

Manchenko GP, Dautova TN, Latypov YY (2000) High level of genetic divergence between sympatric color morphs of the littoral sea anemone Anthopleura orientalis (Anthozoa: Actinaria). Biochem Syst Ecol


Munro ISR (1955) The Marine and Freshwater Fishes of Ceylon. Department of External Affairs, Canberra

Murphy RW, Sites JW Jr, Buth DG, Haufler CH (1996) Proteins: Isozyme electrophoresis. In: Hillis DM, Moritz C, Mable BK (eds) Molecular Systematics, 2nd edn. Sinauer Associates, Massachusetts, pp 51-120

Nixon KC, Wheeler QD (1990) An amplification of the phylogenetic species concept. Cladistics 6:211-223

Pethiyagoda R (1991) Freshwater fishes of Sri Lanka. Wildlife Heritage Trust, Colombo

Pethiyagoda R (2006) Conservation of Sri Lankan freshwater fishes. In: The fauna of Sri Lanka 2006, IUCN, pp 103-112

Reist JD (1985) An empirical evaluation of several univariate methods that adjust for size variation in morphometric data. Can J Zoolog 63:1429-1439

Rossi AR, Capula M, Crosetti D, Campton DE, Sola L (1998) Genetic divergence and phylogentic inferences in five species of Mugilidae (Pisces: Persiformes). Mar Biol 131:213-218

Selander RK, Smith MH, Yang SY, Johnson WE, Gentry JR (1971) Biochemical polymorphism and systematics in the genus Peromyscus I. Variation in the old-field mouse (Peromyscus polyonotus). Studies in Genetics, University of Texas Publication 7103:49-90

Shaklee JB, Tamaru CS, Waples RS (1982) Speciation and evolution of marine fishes studied by the electrophoretic analysis of proteins. Pac Sci 36:141-157

Smith PJ, Robertson DA (1981) Genetic evidence for two species of sprat (Sprattus) in New Zealand waters. Mar Biol 62:227-233

Talwar PK, Jhingran AG (1992) Inland fishes of India and adjacent countries. Vol.2, CRC Press, Balkema/ Rotterdam

Taylor EB, Bentzen P (1993) Molecular genetic evidence for reproductive isolation between sympatric populations of smelt Osmerus in Lake Utopia, south-western New Brunswick, Canada. Mol Ecol 2:345-357

Turner GF (1999) What is a fish species? Rev Fish Biol Fisher 9:281-297

Ward RD, Grewe PM (1995) Appraisal of molecular genetic techniques in fisheries. In: Carvalho GR, Pitcher TJ (eds) Molecular genetics in fisheries. Chapman & Hall, London. pp 29-54

Zar JH (1984) Biostatistical Analysis 2nd edn. Prentice-Hall, New Jersey.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons Licence
Ruhuna Journal of Science by University of Ruhuna is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

eISSN: 2536-8400

Print ISSN: 1800-279X (Before 2014)