Spatio-temporal genetic structure and the effects of long-term fishing in two partially sympatric offshore demersal fishes

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article – Annual report year: 2016Researchpeer-review

Without internal affiliation


  • Author: Henriques, Romina

  • Author: von der Heyden, Sophie

  • Author: Lipinski, Marek R.

  • Author: du Toit, Nina

  • Author: Kainge, Paulus Inekela

    National Marine Information and Research Centre

  • Author: Bloomer, Paulette

  • Author: Matthee, Conrad A.

View graph of relations

Environmental gradients have been shown to disrupt gene flow in marine species, yet their influence in structuring populations at depth remains poorly understood. The Cape hakes (Merluccius paradoxus and M. capensis) are demersal species co-occurring in the Benguela Current system, where decades of intense fishing resulted in severely depleted stocks in the past. Previous studies identified conflicting mtDNA genetic substructuring patterns and thus contrasting evolutionary trajectories for both species. Using 10 microsatellite loci, the control region of mtDNA and employing a seascape genetics approach, we investigated genetic connectivity and the impact of prolonged exploitation in the two species, which are characterized by different patterns of fishing pressure. Three consecutive years were sampled covering the entire distribution (N = 2100 fishes). Despite large estimated population sizes, both species exhibited low levels of contemporary genetic diversity (0.581 
Original languageEnglish
JournalMolecular Ecology
Issue number23
Pages (from-to)5843-5861
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes
CitationsWeb of Science® Times Cited: No match on DOI

    Research areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics, Genetics, effective population size, fishing pressure, genetic chaotic patchiness, genetic variability, microsatellites, seascape genetics

ID: 127800749