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Morphological and molecular differentiation of invasive freshwater species of the genus Corbicula (Bivalvia,Corbiculidea) suggest the presence of three taxa in French rivers

Authors

  • E. Renard,

    1. UPR 9034 — Populations, Génétique et Evolution, CNRS, bâtiment 13, avenue de la terrasse, 91198 Gif sur Yvette cedex, France,
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  • V. Bachmann,

    1. UPRES — Ecotoxicité, Biodiversité et Santé Environnementale, Démoécologie, UFR Sciences Fondamentales et Appliquées, Université de Metz, Campus Bridoux, Avenue du Général Delestraint, 57070 Metz Borny, France
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  • M. L. Cariou,

    1. UPR 9034 — Populations, Génétique et Evolution, CNRS, bâtiment 13, avenue de la terrasse, 91198 Gif sur Yvette cedex, France,
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  • J. C. Moreteau

    Corresponding author
    1. UPRES — Ecotoxicité, Biodiversité et Santé Environnementale, Démoécologie, UFR Sciences Fondamentales et Appliquées, Université de Metz, Campus Bridoux, Avenue du Général Delestraint, 57070 Metz Borny, France
      Jean-Claude Moreteau. Fax: +33 (0)3 87 37 8423; E-mail:moreteau@sciences.univ-metz.fr
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  • The first two authors made equal contributions.

Jean-Claude Moreteau. Fax: +33 (0)3 87 37 8423; E-mail:moreteau@sciences.univ-metz.fr

Abstract

Asiatic Clams are common in brackish and fresh water in Asia, and they were introduced into North America in 1924 and have now spread throughout the continent. During the last two decades they have been reported in Europe, but the number of species here is uncertain. Populations of Corbicula from France and the Netherlands were analysed morphologically and genetically to quantify the degree of species and/or population differentiation. The morphological and genetic data, based on allozymes and mitochondrial sequences, were in full agreement. They indicate that there are two distinct species, identified as C. fluminalis and C. fluminea, in the two countries. Analyses of the mitochondrial COI gene revealed an unexpected divergent population of Corbicula in the Rhône. All these individuals were morphologically identified as C. fluminea, but had a COI sequence different from the two previous species. This population may, therefore, be a more ancient population, or a distinct species introduced via a different colonization route.

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