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Keywords:

  • ecological genetics;
  • evolutionary theory;
  • fish;
  • speciation

Abstract

The field of speciation has seen much renewed interest in the past few years, with theoretical and empirical advances that have moved it from a descriptive field to a predictive and testable one. The goal of this review is to provide a general background on research on speciation as it pertains to fishes. Three major components to the question are first discussed: the spatial, ecological and sexual factors that influence speciation mechanisms. We then move to the latest developments in the field of speciation genomics. Affordable and rapidly available, massively parallel sequencing data allow speciation studies to converge into a single comprehensive line of investigation, where the focus has shifted to the search for speciation genes and genomic islands of speciation. We argue that fish present a very diverse array of scenarios, making them an ideal model to study speciation processes.