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Phylogenetic Interrelationships, Taxonomy, And Reductive Evolution In The Neotropical Electric Fish Genus Hypopygus

Home Forums Ichthyology Phylogenetic Interrelationships, Taxonomy, And Reductive Evolution In The Neotropical Electric Fish Genus Hypopygus

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    Matt
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    Abstract

    A phylogenetic reconstruction of the Neotropical electric fish genus Hypopygus based on 47 parsimony-informative morphological characters is presented. A series of synapomorphies support the hypothesis of monophyly of Hypopygus, and partially resolve species-level relationships within the genus. Hypopygus species are recognized here as miniaturized fishes based on two criteria; first, a derived condition of diminutive body size, and; second, the presence of a suite of reductive morphological characters, including partial or total losses, simplifications, and reductions of the anal-fin rays, scales, cranial bones, and laterosensory canal system. Reductive characters associated with miniaturization comprise 45% of the total number of characters in the phylogenetic reconstruction of the genus. Miniaturization and reductive morphological evolution in Hypopygus are discussed here in the phylogenetic context. A taxonomic revision of Hypopygus is presented, in which five new species are described, two species previously assigned to the genus are redescribed, and a single known species of Stegostenopos is redescribed and included in Hypopygus as a junior synonym. Distribution maps and a key for all eight valid species of Hypopygus are provided, based on the examination of 5014 catalogued museum specimens.

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