Comparative Transcriptomics Of Sympatric Species Of Coral Reef Fishes (genus: Haemulon)
Coral reefs are major hotspots of diversity for marine fishes, yet there is still ongoing debate on the mechanisms that promote divergence in these rich ecosystems. Our understanding of how diversity originates in this environment could be enhanced by investigating the evolutionary dynamics of closely related fishes with overlapping ranges. Here, we focus on grunts of the genus
Wild fish samples from three sympatric species of the Caribbean:
Overall, our analyses suggest closely related grunts show important differences in genes associated with body shape and feeding morphology, a result in-line with previous morphological studies in the group. Further, despite their overlapping distribution they interact with their environment in distinct fashions. This is the largest compendium of genomic information for grunts thus far, representing a valuable resource for future studies in this unique group of coral reef fishes.