Biogeography of Lanternfishes (Myctophidae) South of 30°S

Biogeography of Lanternfishes (Myctophidae) South of 30°S

Editor(s): Richard Frank McGinnis

Published Online: 16 MAR 2013

Print ISBN: 9780875901817

Online ISBN: 9781118665053

DOI: 10.1029/AR035

About this Book

Published by the American Geophysical Union as part of the Antarctic Research Series, Volume 35.

A total of 84 nominal species of lanternfishes (Myctophidae) occur in the southern hemisphere south of 30°S. The distributions of these species have been analyzed in relation to the hydrology of the area. Antarctic/ Antarctic polar front, subantarctic, transitional water, and warm water lanternfish complexes, each reflecting a pattern of distribution associated with major hydrographic phenomena, have been defined and discussed. It is concluded that systems of oceanic circulation, as well as vertical distribution and inherited tolerances of these fishes to environmental variables, are important in determining their distribution. Endemic genera have been shown to occur in Antarctic-subantarctic, southern transitional, cold north Pacific, and warm water regions of the World Ocean. A consideration of paleontological and paleoceanographic literature leads to the hypothesis that conditions conducive to the evolution of these genera existed in the Oligocene era, the family achieving its present level of generic differentiation by the Miocene era. It is suggested that recent lanternfish complexes evolved from early Tertiary faunas during the marked climatic and oceanographic fluctuations of the Pliocene and Pleistocene eras.

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