Identification of a uniquely southern African clade of coastal pipefishes Syngnathus spp

M Mwale, H. Kaiser, Nigel Barker, A. Wilson, Peter Teske

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    13 Citations (Scopus)


    The taxonomic status of two southern African coastal pipefish species, Syngnathus temminckii and Syngnathus watermeyeri, was investigated using a combination of morphological and genetic data. Morphological data showed that S. temminckii is distinct from the broadly distributed European pipefish Syngnathus acus, and a molecular phylogeny reconstructed using mitochondrial DNA recovered S. temminckii and S. watermeyeri as sister taxa. The southern African species share an evolutionary origin with north-eastern Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea species, including S. acus. These data support the existence of a distinct southern African clade of Syngnathus pipefishes that has diverged in situ to form the two species present in the region today.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2045-2062
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Fish Biology
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2013


    • Mitochondrial DNA
    • Morphometrics
    • Phylogeny
    • Syngnathus acus
    • Syngnathus temminckii
    • Syngnathus watermeyeri


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