40th Annual Larval Fish Conference

Solomons, MD

June 19 -23, 2016

Ontogeny and Systematics: Using early life history to identify homology or additional characters for phylogenetic studies

Conveners: G. David Johnson, Carole C. Baldwin, Jeffrey M. Leis, Peter Konstantinidis, Nalani Schnell

Symposium description: Comparative ontogeny offers one potential determining factor in elucidating interrelationships. Anatomical characters in early life history stages of fishes are often the sole source for identifying homologous structures, and for that reason are of great importance for phylogenetic and evolutionary studies. In taxa for which early life stages of species are unknown, the identification of homologous structures proves difficult and is based exclusively on their adult configuration. This approach often fails to resolve the question of homology and this obscures the phylogenetic signal because informative larval characters and ontogenetic character transformations remain undetected. Furthermore, the morphological specializations of larvae of many marine fishes offer an additional, rich suite of characters. One can logically ask, “How can it be an acceptable practice to so frequently cavalierly dismiss the most dynamic life history stages in systematic studies?” For many fishes, larvae are poorly known or ontogenetic series are incomplete or not suitable for anatomical preparation, which makes the elucidation of early life history characters and homology problematic. In fact, the acquisition and careful study of suitable early stage specimens requires singular dedication. In this session, we invite papers that deal with morphological studies of ontogenetic stages in order to demonstrate their importance for phylogenetic and other evolutionary studies of fishes.

LFC 2016 Home

LFC 2016 Registration

LFC 2016 Hotels

LFC 2016 Abstract Portal

LFC 2016 Symposia

Maternal FX

Carry over

ELHS of Large Pelagics

Larval Dispersal

ELHS in Food Webs

Ontongeny and Systematics

Getting in touch

The conference is being organized by Tom Miller and Dave Secor at CBL. The conference email address is LFC2016@cbl.umces.edu - and this is the best way of getting in touch with us.