What does the Red Lion Fish () Pterois Volitans ) such a successful and powerful invader in the Atlantic waters in relation to its right lamb-like existence in its original Pacific Ocean?
A new study by North Carolina State University, investigating two native lionfish regions in the Pacific and five invading regions of the Atlantic, showed the greatest genetic similarities between lionfish in Taiwan and the Bahamas, suggesting that a population near Taiwan was the source of the invading species.
Lionfish was introduced to the Atlantic in the mid-1
" P. Volitans has a lot to do for it in Atlantic waters," says Martha Burford Reiskind, research assistant professor of applied ecology at the NC state and equivalent author of a document describing the research. "They are found in large densities and in some cases can spawn every four days in the Atlantic, their eggs can travel vast distances on ocean currents and worsen their spread."
"They are also difficult to handle because of their toxic spine. The population has grown so large that it controls it and does not eradicate it. It is the primary target."
Besides learning more about important gene regions, showing signs of rapid development when the species arrived in the invasive area, the researchers also examined whether the Atlantic or Pacific lionfish could be hybrids or combinations of two lionfish. Specifically, researchers wanted to know if P. Volitans had merged with P. miles, the devil fired fish.
"We did not There is no evidence of P. miles or hybrids in our Atlantic trials," said Burford Reiskind. "But we cannot rule out that the fish introduced to the Atlantic from the Pacific was not already a kind hybrid between an Indian Ocean and Pacific species. "
Burford Reiskind said the study could help during other invasive events.
"Some of these intruders quickly adapt to new surroundings. What are the genes that allow them to successfully invade?" She asked. "Can we make better predictions as invasive species as P. volitans is eradicated before it's too late? "
The study was conducted by undergraduate and graduate students in a conservation genetics course taught by Burford Reiskind. In this experimental linking project, students collected samples, sequenced DNA, built genomic libraries, analyzed data, and served as co-authors of a paper found in Biological Invasions .
"We were not sure what to find when we took on this project as a class," said Burford Reiskind. "It was fun to see students learning how to conduct genomic studies on an important conservation issue."
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M. O. Burford Reiskind et al. Invasion genomics: Characterization of red lionfish (Pterois volitans) populations from the original and introduced regions, Biological Inventions (2019). DOI: 10.1007 / s10530-019-01992-0
Lionfish genes studied for traces of invasive skill (2019, April 26)
retrieved April 27, 2019
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