Global ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitats

Handle URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10754/622677
Title:
Global ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitats
Authors:
Fulton, Christopher J.; Wainwright, Peter C.; Hoey, Andrew; Bellwood, David R.
Abstract:
Phenotypic adaptations can allow organisms to relax abiotic selection and facilitate their ecological success in challenging habitats, yet we have relatively little data for the prevalence of this phenomenon at macroecological scales. Using data on the relative abundance of coral reef wrasses and parrotfishes (f. Labridae) spread across three ocean basins and the Red Sea, we reveal the consistent global dominance of extreme wave-swept habitats by fishes in the genus Thalassoma, with abundances up to 15 times higher than any other labrid. A key locomotor modification-a winged pectoral fin that facilitates efficient underwater flight in high-flow environments-is likely to have underpinned this global success, as numerical dominance by Thalassoma was contingent upon the presence of high-intensity wave energy. The ecological success of the most abundant species also varied with species richness and the presence of congeneric competitors. While several fish taxa have independently evolved winged pectoral fins, Thalassoma appears to have combined efficient high-speed swimming (to relax abiotic selection) with trophic versatility (to maximize exploitation of rich resources) to exploit and dominate extreme coral reef habitats around the world.
KAUST Department:
Biological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering (BESE) Division; Red Sea Research Center (RSRC)
Citation:
Fulton CJ, Wainwright PC, Hoey AS, Bellwood DR (2016) Global ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitats. Ecology and Evolution. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ece3.2624.
Publisher:
Wiley-Blackwell
Journal:
Ecology and Evolution
Issue Date:
20-Dec-2016
DOI:
10.1002/ece3.2624
Type:
Article
ISSN:
2045-7758
Sponsors:
We thank the many research station staff around the world for their field assistance, C. Goatley for illustrations, and two anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments. Surveys were conducted with approval of the JCU Animal Experimentation Ethics Committee (A429).
Additional Links:
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ece3.2624/full
Appears in Collections:
Articles; Red Sea Research Center (RSRC); Biological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering (BESE) Division

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorFulton, Christopher J.en
dc.contributor.authorWainwright, Peter C.en
dc.contributor.authorHoey, Andrewen
dc.contributor.authorBellwood, David R.en
dc.date.accessioned2017-01-11T12:20:30Z-
dc.date.available2017-01-11T12:20:30Z-
dc.date.issued2016-12-20en
dc.identifier.citationFulton CJ, Wainwright PC, Hoey AS, Bellwood DR (2016) Global ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitats. Ecology and Evolution. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ece3.2624.en
dc.identifier.issn2045-7758en
dc.identifier.doi10.1002/ece3.2624en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10754/622677-
dc.description.abstractPhenotypic adaptations can allow organisms to relax abiotic selection and facilitate their ecological success in challenging habitats, yet we have relatively little data for the prevalence of this phenomenon at macroecological scales. Using data on the relative abundance of coral reef wrasses and parrotfishes (f. Labridae) spread across three ocean basins and the Red Sea, we reveal the consistent global dominance of extreme wave-swept habitats by fishes in the genus Thalassoma, with abundances up to 15 times higher than any other labrid. A key locomotor modification-a winged pectoral fin that facilitates efficient underwater flight in high-flow environments-is likely to have underpinned this global success, as numerical dominance by Thalassoma was contingent upon the presence of high-intensity wave energy. The ecological success of the most abundant species also varied with species richness and the presence of congeneric competitors. While several fish taxa have independently evolved winged pectoral fins, Thalassoma appears to have combined efficient high-speed swimming (to relax abiotic selection) with trophic versatility (to maximize exploitation of rich resources) to exploit and dominate extreme coral reef habitats around the world.en
dc.description.sponsorshipWe thank the many research station staff around the world for their field assistance, C. Goatley for illustrations, and two anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments. Surveys were conducted with approval of the JCU Animal Experimentation Ethics Committee (A429).en
dc.publisherWiley-Blackwellen
dc.relation.urlhttp://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ece3.2624/fullen
dc.rightsThis is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.en
dc.rights.urihttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/en
dc.subjectAspect ratioen
dc.subjectEcomorphologyen
dc.subjectLabriformen
dc.subjectMacroecologyen
dc.subjectSpecializationen
dc.titleGlobal ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitatsen
dc.typeArticleen
dc.contributor.departmentBiological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering (BESE) Divisionen
dc.contributor.departmentRed Sea Research Center (RSRC)en
dc.identifier.journalEcology and Evolutionen
dc.relation.referencesFulton, C. J., Wainwright, P. C., Hoey, A. S., & Bellwood, D. R. (2016). Data from: Global ecological success of Thalassoma fishes in extreme coral reef habitats (Version 1) [Data set]. Dryad Digital Repository. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.24q8pen
dc.relation.referencesDOI:10.5061/DRYAD.24Q8Pen
dc.relation.referencesHANDLE:http://hdl.handle.net/10754/624166en
dc.eprint.versionPublisher's Version/PDFen
dc.contributor.institutionResearch School of Biology The Australian National University Canberra, ACT Australiaen
dc.contributor.institutionDepartment of Evolution and Ecology University of California Davis, CA USAen
dc.contributor.institutionARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies College of Marine and Environmental Sciences James Cook University Townsville, QLD Australiaen
kaust.authorHoey, Andrewen
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