Original paper

Signs of introgression of Baikal omul (Coregonus migratorius) or Arctic cisco (C. autumnalis) into European whitefish (C. lavaretus) in the eastern Baltic Sea

Sendek, D.S.; Bochkarev, N.A.; Zuykova, E.I.; Politov, D.V.; Wanzenböck, J.; Himberg, M.; Titov, S.F.

Fundamental and Applied Limnology Volume 189 Nr. 3 (2017), p. 209 - 225

published: Feb 1, 2017

DOI: 10.1127/fal/2016/0791

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Abstract

The phylogenetic relations of the European whitefish (C. lavaretus Linnaeus) populations from the eastern Gulf of Finland (Baltic Sea) were studied using variations in scale patterns, gill raker numbers, a nuclear gene, the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1) of ribosomal DNA (rDNA), fragment of 16S-ND1 genes of mitochondrial DNA and 30 allozyme loci. Whitefish samples exhibited mixed genetic markers (16S-ND1 of mtDNA and allozyme loci) of lineages from geographically separated Late Quaternary shelters. Besides C. lavaretus was hybridized with members of the C. autumnalis complex or with Baikal omul. The mtDNA of these both was not detected among the samples analyzed, but nuclear gene exchange took place. This may be of adaptive value for the evolution of a taxon of mixed origin under unstable environmental conditions. The phenomenon of interspecific hybridization is confirmed by the presence of fishes with aberrant scale cover. Baikal omul is regarded as a possible source of recent invasion of the Siberian species in the Baltic Sea via stocking. However, whether hybridization was a recent event or if it happened post-glacially involving aboriginal Arctic cisco (C. autumnalis) remains open to discussion.

Keywords

phylogenetic relationscoregonus autumnaliscoregonus migratoriusinterspecific hybridizationgulf of finlandcoregonus lavaretus