A Comparative Study on Body Shape of the Genus Alburnus (Rafinesque, 1820) in Iran, Using Geometric Morphometric Analysis

Abstract

Geometric morphometric method was used to examine body shape variations among all the seven valid species of the genus Alburnus in Iran. In total 409 specimens of A. chalcoides, A. filippii, A. atropatenae, A. caeruleus, A. mossulensis, A. hohenackeri and A. zagrosensis were collected from Babolrud, Baleqlu-Chai, Miriseh, Sarabeleh, Gamasiyab, Mahabad-Chai Rivers and the Gandoman lagoon, respectively. Shape data was extracted by recording 15 landmark points on 2-D pictures of specimens. The PCA, DFA and CVA/MANOVA analysis were used to examine shape differences among the seven species. Significant differences were found among the species in term of body shape. The PCA and CVA/MANOVA showed separation of A. hohenackeri and A. caeruleus from the others. Results revealed that the studied species are divided into two categories; a group with great body depth and short caudal peduncle and the other one with shallow body depth and longer caudal peduncle. The obtained body shape properties can provide a shape-based identification key for the genus Alburnus in Iran, useful for fisheries and stock management or conservation programs.

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