Skip to main content

Free Content Fishes of the Family Ophidiidae. IX. Analysis of Geographic Variation in Lepophidium Microlepis with Descriptions of Two New Subspecies

Download Article:
(PDF 696.7 kb)


Lepophidium microlepis ranges from Baja California to Peru, a distribution shared with L. negropinna and L. pardale. Unlike its more shallow-dwelling congeners, L. microlepis exhibits marked latitudinal variation in meristic and morphometric characters and in certain features of pigmentation. Three well marked subspecies are defined, two of which, L. microlepis hubbsi and L. microlepis inca, are described as new.

The isolating mechanisms involve the fact that adults of microlepis occur in cold waters of the deep shelf and upper slope while the larvae require warm surface waters as do all species of Lepophidium. Unfavorable surface currents which move larvae offshore, surface temperature and its annual variation, poleward-flowing undercurrents, and physiographic features of the Continental Shelf itself are all discussed as factors in maintaining stock isolation of one or all of the subspecies.

Surface currents are judged to be most important in isolating microlepis from hubbsi.

Reasons for the isolation of hubbsi and inca are less clear but probably involve the marked difference in surface temperatures between the range of the two as well as surface currents and possibly the Peru-Chile Undercurrent.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 1978

More about this publication?
  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
  • Editorial Board
  • Information for Authors
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Terms & Conditions
  • ingentaconnect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
ingentaconnect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more