Morphometric Pattern and Feeding Mode in Emperor Fishes (Lethrinidae, Perciformes)
The relationship between body shape and tooth type is examined for the 28 species of emperor fishes in the genus Lethrinus by means of shape coordinates and thin-plate splines. Both methods delineate two major groups within the genus. One group consists of low-bodied species with conically shaped lateral teeth. The other group consists of high-bodied species with both molariform, conical and intermediate lateral tooth types. Uniform shape components appear to account for much of the inferred evolutionary shape changes in these fishes. The primary nonuniform component of shape difference among fishes describes an arching of the body upwards and downwards, which may reflect a preservation artifact.
KeywordsBody Shape Shape Difference Centroid Size Canonical Variate Analysis Lateral Tooth
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