These authors contributed equally to this work.
SPECIES-SPECIFIC DIFFERENCES IN ADAPTIVE PHENOTYPIC PLASTICITY IN AN ECOLOGICALLY RELEVANT TROPHIC TRAIT: HYPERTROPHIC LIPS IN MIDAS CICHLID FISHES
Article first published online: 18 FEB 2014
© 2014 The Author(s). Evolution © 2014 The Society for the Study of Evolution.
Volume 68, Issue 7, pages 2086–2091, July 2014
How to Cite
Machado-Schiaffino, G., Henning, F. and Meyer, A. (2014), SPECIES-SPECIFIC DIFFERENCES IN ADAPTIVE PHENOTYPIC PLASTICITY IN AN ECOLOGICALLY RELEVANT TROPHIC TRAIT: HYPERTROPHIC LIPS IN MIDAS CICHLID FISHES. Evolution, 68: 2086–2091. doi: 10.1111/evo.12367
- Issue published online: 1 JUL 2014
- Article first published online: 18 FEB 2014
- Accepted manuscript online: 29 JAN 2014 04:51PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 14 JAN 2014
- Manuscript Received: 6 SEP 2013
- Alexander von Humboldt fellowship and Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft. Grant Number: DFG MA6144/1–1
- Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq)/German Academic Exchange Program (DAAD) cooperation
- DFG and European Research Council. Grant Number: “GenAdap” 29700
- Adaptive phenotypic plasticity;
- Amphilophus labiatus;
- Amphilophus citrinellus;
- Hypertrophic lips;
- Midas cichlids;
- Reaction norm
The spectacular species richness of cichlids and their diversity in morphology, coloration, and behavior have made them an ideal model for the study of speciation and adaptive evolution. Hypertrophic lips evolved repeatedly and independently in African and Neotropical cichlid radiations. Cichlids with hypertrophic lips forage predominantly in rocky crevices and it has been hypothesized that mechanical stress caused by friction could result in larger lips through phenotypic plasticity. To test the influence of the environment on the size and development of lips, we conducted a series of breeding and feeding experiments on Midas cichlids. Full-sibs of Amphilophus labiatus (thick-lipped) and Amphilophus citrinellus (thin-lipped) each were split into a control group which was fed food from the water column and a treatment group whose food was fixed to substrates. We found strong evidence for phenotypic plasticity on lip area in the thick-lipped species, but not in the thin-lipped species. Intermediate phenotypic values were observed in hybrids from thick- and thin-lipped species reared under “control” conditions. Thus, both a genetic, but also a phenotypic plastic component is involved in the development of hypertrophic lips in Neotropical cichlids. Moreover, species-specific adaptive phenotypic plasticity was found, suggesting that plasticity is selected for in recent thick-lipped species.