ELASMOBRANCH BIODIVERSITY: THE MORE YOU LOOK, THE MORE YOU FIND - A CASE-STUDY OF THE DOGFISH GENUS Squalus

with Ana Veríssimo (CIBIO-InBIO/UP) | May 23, 2016 - 12h00 | CIBIO-InBIO, Vairão, Portugal

 

Elasmobranchs, i.e. sharks, skates and rays, comprise a group with many charismatic species capturing the media and the public attention. Despite this, basic knowledge on the species’ biology and ecology is very limited for a large number of taxa, and even species diversity is still poorly documented in many genera. Another issue compromising research efforts has to due with fundamental problems in accurately identifying and classifying species, which hamper the collection of robust biological and ecological data. The genus Squalus, generally referred to as spurdogs or spiny dogfishes, is one of the most taxonomically problematic genera of sharks. I will present recent results from an international effort using molecular genetic data to provide an alternative perspective on the alpha diversity of dogfishes in the eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea. Our results indicate inconsistent species identification and the presence of cryptic diversity in these regions, and highlights the need for revisionary taxonomic studies on Squalus.

 

 

Ana Veríssimo is a Post-Doctoral Researcher at CIBIO-InBIO since 2012. She got her BSc in Biology Applied to the Marine Resources (2001, Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon), and afterwards worked for two years at the Portuguese Fisheries Research Institute (currently IPMA) in the Deepwater Fisheries Resources Lab. She obtained her doctoral degree in Marine Sciences at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (U.S.A.), where she applied molecular genetic tools to study the population structure patterns of three commercially exploited shark species. Her research focus on studying the diversity of sharks globally and on the patterns and drivers of population structure in this group.

 

[Host: António Emilio Ferrand de Almeida Múrias dos Santos, Ecology and Evolution of Aquatic Organisms]