DNA barcoding provides support for a cryptic species complex within the globally distributed and fishery important opah (Lampris guttatus)
Article first published online: 14 MAY 2014
Published 2014. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.
Molecular Ecology Resources
Volume 14, Issue 6, pages 1239–1247, November 2014
How to Cite
Hyde, J. R., Underkoffler, K. E. and Sundberg, M. A. (2014), DNA barcoding provides support for a cryptic species complex within the globally distributed and fishery important opah (Lampris guttatus). Molecular Ecology Resources, 14: 1239–1247. doi: 10.1111/1755-0998.12268
- Issue published online: 10 OCT 2014
- Article first published online: 14 MAY 2014
- Accepted manuscript online: 22 APR 2014 02:52AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 17 APR 2014
- Manuscript Revised: 15 APR 2014
- Manuscript Received: 14 MAR 2014
- cryptic species;
- Lampris guttatus ;
The cornerstone of fisheries management relies on a solid taxonomic base and an understanding of how animals can be grouped into coherent management units. Surprisingly, little is known about the basic biology and ecology of opah (Lampris guttatus), a globally distributed species that is commercially exploited and regionally common in the North Pacific. Recent efforts to collect life history data on this species uncovered evidence of two North Pacific morphotypes. Sequencing of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I gene (655 bp) for these morphotypes and other specimens collected worldwide (n = 480) produced five strongly diverged and well-supported clades. Additional sequence data from the cytochrome b gene (1141 bp) as well as the nuclear recombination activating gene 1 (1323 bp) corroborated these results, suggesting these five clades probably represent separate species. Our conclusion that opah is a complex of five separate species has implications for management and indicates a need to gather additional data on these poorly understood fishes.