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Laura A. B. Wilson, Marco Colombo, Reinhold Hanel, Walter Salzburger and Marcelo R. Sánchez-Villagra Ecomorphological disparity in an adaptive radiation: opercular bone shape and stable isotopes in Antarctic icefishes Ecology and Evolution 3

Article first published online: 5 AUG 2013 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.708

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This study analyses the relationship between ecological and morphological disparity in the adaptive radiation of Antarctic notothenioid fish using patterns of opercle bone shape evolution. We identify axes of shape change, particularly a widening of the opercle bone, that have been recovered in other adaptive radiations (three-spined sticklebacks) and a trend in opercle shape along the benthic-pelagic axis, underlining the importance of this axis for diversification in notothenioids. Consistent with mathematical predictions of an adaptive radiation model, opercle shape and size disparity is higher than would be expected under neutral evolution.

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