Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

New cichlid species and taxonomy
Nuchal Man
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Nuchal Man » Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:31 am

Robert, your argument is still extremely poor. You offer absolutely none of your own data and redundantly state the same position without addressing any of the other evidence that has been put forth. You should also know, this forum has some members that have a background in or are pursuing education in systematics and molecular phylogenetics (including myself). There are many accomplished hobbyists on the forum who have offered very interesting and informative observations from fish not only in captivity, but also in their natural habitats. To say that we can't learn anything from the fish in captivity is preposterous! In fact, the midas complex has offered us tons of very informative data from research in captivity. One well known author who studied the midas complex that should ring a bell is George Barlow.

As you claim to have a training in sytematics, you should well be aware that if you are going to place taxa into synonymy it is important to have a variety of data to back up your claim, none of which you yourself presented, nor does it seem collected yourself. You have consistently used the work Barluenga et al., 2006 and Barluenga et al., 2010 as your support. If you do have your own data and analysis, feel free to share them. I'm sure many would be interested in seeing your statistical support for your claim. Simply stating they are not different enough without providing data to back your findings is not adequate.

In neither study you use as your main support by Barluenga et al., do they state Amphilophus labiatus and Amphilophus citrinellus should be considered synonyms, in fact, as I stated above, they said in the 2010 paper that there is evidence for the fish supporting them as separate species even though they have remarkably similar DNA. You also haven't responded to the other very pertinent paper by Geiger et al., 2010 that I mentioned. As stated earlier, they found Lake Nicaragua Amphilophus to be polyphyletic and represent four species. The midas cichlid radiation is remarkably young like many cichlid radiations. Throughout a variety of cichlid lineages you can find fish with remarkably similar DNA that are taxonomically distinct. As stated above, there are short falls to many DNA studies using mitochondrial DNA, which has been a part of all Phylogenetic studies of Amphilophus I'm aware of. Hopefully, with nuclear DNA studies becoming more popular and much cheaper to perform, and the ability we will soon have of being able to decode the whole genome of cichlid species, we will have future studies that are much more informative.

I also find your citation of Meek's work, specifically his 1907 Synopsis of the fishes of the great lakes of Nicaragua extremely puzzling. No where does he state that Amphilophus citrinellus and Amphilophus labiatus are the same. In fact, it seems quite the opposite, he described numerous species in that paper as well as recognized multiple species previously described by other taxonomists that we now know are synonyms of Amphilophus labiatus and Amphilophus citrinellus! Meek described Cichlasoma granadense from Lake Nicaragua in that paper that is a synonym of Amphilophus citrinellus. He also described Cichlasom dorsatum in that paper with the type locality of Lake Nicaragua as well as view Cichlasoma erythraeus and Cichlasoma lobochilus described by Gunther in 1867 with type localities at Lake Nicaragua as valid even though they are synonyms of Amphilophus labiatus.

Please feel free to respond to some of the information provided by not only me, but Willem Heijns and Bas, after all, this is a discussion.

-Sam

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Bojan Dolenc
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Bojan Dolenc » Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:07 am

Very interesting and instructive results on this problematic were writen in this work: Elmer et al. (2010): Rapid sympatric ecological differentiation of craterlake cichlid fishes within historic times. BMC Biology 2010, 8:60

"Lake Apoyeque holds two sympatric, endemic morphs of Midas cichlid: one with large, hypertrophied lips (~20% of the total population) and another with thin lips. Hypertrophied lips are an overt species-specific character related to ecology in cichlids. It has evolved independently in different environments and species complexes of various New World and Old World cichlids; it is considered to be a diagnostic trait.
For example, the Nicaraguan great lake Midas cichlid species A. citrinellus and A. labiatus are discerned primarily by lip morphology, although they also differ in head shape, snout angle, feeding behaviour, anterior teeth, fin position and length, pharyngeal jaws and body shape -much like the two morphs of Midas cichlid in Apoyeque. In contrast to these differences, some meristic values overlap between A. citrinellus and A. labiatus and the extent of lip hypertrophy varies within populations. Further, neutral genetic differentiation between those two species is low or absent. This is a conundrum because young eco-morphological variants (for example, benthic or limnetic species) in various crater lakes can be discerned genetically. Thus, early researchers of Nicaragua's cichlids vacillated on the issue of polymorphism versus speciation but concluded that the weigh of evidence argued for two Midas cichlid species in the great lakes, A. citrinellus and A. labiatus and all currently published research proceeds under the assumption that they are different species. In the laboratory, A. labiatus mate assortatively and resultant offspring have thick lips (KRE and AM unpublished data), suggesting that this trait is
involved in sexual isolation by assortative mating and has a strong genetic component. Mate choice experiments between A. citrinellus and A. labiatus have, to our knowledge, never been published. Certainly, further research is needed on 'lippiness' and this is a research topic that we are currently undertaking from ecological, behavioural and genetic perspectives. Therefore, although at present we cannot completely rule out that being thin- or thick-lipped is an intrapopulation polymorphism or plasticity in Apoyeque, we consider it quite unlikely. Instead, we suggest that the ecological differentiation between thick- and thin-lipped eco-morphs in Apoyeque represents a case of ecologically distinct, sympatric incipient sister species. Moreover, lips may be one of the very few examples for a 'magic trait' -a trait that combines disruptive natural selection and assortative mating and that also might lead to speciation in sympatry. Low or absent genetic differentiation between morphs does not contradict incipient ecological speciation because it is an overly conservative estimator and neither microsatellites nor mtDNA sequences robustly differentiate other species of Midas cichlid that differ in lip character. It may be that the same ecological, genetic or behavioural factors responsible for low meristic and genetic divergence between A. citrinellus and A. labiatus in Nicaragua's great lakes are also at play in Apoyeque. Further research on the association of eco-morphological divergence, such as lip hypertrophy, with reproductive isolation is needed in all Midas cichlids."
Change in habit, producing change of function, is the main cause of the production of change in living structure. F. Wood Jones (1953) Trends of life

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Willem Heijns » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:10 am

For some reason :wink: I feel inspired to respond once more to this topic, also taking into account that Robert Price finally replied to my second post. Here are some quotes from what he wrote:

"I apologize for my poor spelling, as my eyesight is poor."
I would say he is not just suffering from poor eyesight, but much more from poor reading. Let me illustrate this.

He states: "However, you yourself said Apoyo is too turbid to see anything important, then admit you have never seen zaliousus breeding there"
I wrote: "I must admit I have never seen zaliosus interbreed with other species" (boldface added for clarity)
and: "Lago Nicaragua and/or Lago Managua, but field observations there are impossible due to the turbidity of the water". (again boldface added for clarity). I never said Apoyo was turbid, in fact it is the clearest of all crater lakes.

And finally: "Unless you care to appeal to International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature to change the definition of species"
As a humble hobbyist I have learned that The ICZN (the Code) is about nomenclature and not about taxonomy/systematics. So the Commision has nothing to do with species concepts. The glossary of the Code has two definitions of the word "species":
1. the rank next below the genus group; the basic rank of zoological classification;
2. a taxon at the rank of species.
Any reasonable person can clearly see that these definitions will in no way help any trained systematist in deciding whether organisms should be assigned to one or to two different species.

So hopefully, we can continue this discussion with sound arguments and sufficient data. In this respect I have one question for Robert:

Which field observations (because at home doesn't count) have brougth him to the opinion: "they constantly interbreed"?
Slàinte mhath!

Uilleam

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:25 pm

First, I would like to correct "Cichla's" defintions of Species and Lineages. Lineages are an evolutionary progression of species (Wikipedia). Thus, it is impossible for an organism we are examining now, not far in the past nor 10,000 years hence as a species.

I realized this topic would stir a lot of controversy when I wrote it. I appreciate all objective opinions. I do feel that some contributors have lost track of what I am doing. I am not saying that all A. labiatus and citrinellus are the same. I am reducing the degree of difference from species to race. As distinct races, they may in the future become full species which does not preclude them separating into distinct lineages as well. As an accredited Ph.d in ichthyological and herpetological systematics, it falls within my purview to make the asserations that because of their large area of sympatry and the fact they interbreed often within that range (no genetic, or classical ecological study will ever be able to tell exactly how often), they defy the most commonly accepted definition of species, but are recognized as distinct races.

Refence: Wikipedia: Evolutionary lineages
Last edited by RobertPrice on Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:35 pm

cichla wrote:Dear all.
RobertPrice, when I have read your post the first time I thought it must be a satire. But it seems to be that you are treating it serious. However, your comparison between the taxonomy and species discrimination of Midas Cichlids and Homo sapiens (in particular the shape and size of the lips) is just ridiculous.
In contrast to your statements about the taxonomy of the genus Homo there are many described species taxa. It starts already with Linneaus (1758) who recognized different species in genus. BasPels (see post above) explained why the taxonomy of the genus Homo has to be treated different.
Your thoughts about mate preferences and mate choice in Homo sapiens do not includes the knowledge and the results of the 'behavioral ecology' (which paint a much different picture). The species concept you are following is antiquated and just 'out of date'. Nowadays the majority of taxonomists (in particular ichthyologists) are convinced that species are evolving lineages. The 'modern' evolutionary species concept goes back to Simpson 1961 (see Wiley 1978) and that is much long before the rise of the 'DNA-stuff'.
You are classifying people ('greatest ichthyologist'; 'You seem expert on the fish themselves, but lacking...') instead of considering their papers, statements and arguments.
I agree with NuchalMan and Willem. Their contributions are well written and are including convincing arguments.
Best, IS
Wiley (1978): The Evolutionary Species Concept Reconsidered. Syst. Zool. 27: 17-26.
Please note my reply on the next page. Robert Price
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:27 pm

I don't consider than to be the last word on the topic, But WikiHow, in their online article on How To Hybridize Cichlids, states that 90% of all the Midas and Red Devils for sale are Midevils.

Robert Price
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Nuchal Man » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:34 pm

Holy Crap! You just cited wikipedia as a source! Not only that, you cited Animal World (earlier, I missed it). Seriously Robert, as the accredited PhD that you claim to be you should know much better than that and use peer reviewed literature! Wikipedia is never a valid source, it's completely open to the public and there is a ton of misinformation of the site! It's sad if this is how you do research and you've been published in peer reviewed journals. I wish you would respond in more depth to some of the other evidence from peer reviewed sources posted by Willem, Ingo, and myself instead of redundantly stating you point over and over again (as you did in your latest post). It's easy for someone to throw around the title of PhD, but it doesn't mean you put forth good work in your field, and from what I've seen from your posts on the subject, I'd be really scared for the sake of the art of taxonomy if this is how you do work.

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Sat Aug 11, 2012 12:16 am

Bas Pels wrote:In all honesty, I can not see any argument in the first posting which convinces me

Amphilophus citrinellum and A. labiatum can interbreed. So what? I've seen Hypsophrys nicaraquensae and Cryptoheros nigrocfasciatus interbreed. Amphilophus trimaculatus ans "Cichlasoma istlanum" interbred in my house - and a year later the offspring also produced swimming fry. I found a hybrid of Herichthys labiatum (although, it could have been H panosticticus) with Cryptoheros septemfasciatus in a swarm of C. septemfasciatus. This is not an argument.

All cichlids of Central america are suspected of being able to interbreed. Species have to be defined differently. And this possible interbreeding might even be the reason why it is so hard to draw conclusions from DNA searches: they quite often contradict each other, perhaps due to this possibility of dealing with hybrids, which later crossed back into one of the parent species. I could not say.

If one would compare a man of the pygmy tribes with a man from Norway, I'm quite certain a extra terrestrial taxonimist, who would know nothing about humans, would from a morphological point of view think about two species - but we know better. Further, all taxonimical research in the genus Homo has to do with sensitive politics, and therefore I think it is better to keep Homo sapiens out of any taxonomical discussion.

I do agree A citrinellum and A. labiatum are very closely related, and they might even be the same species - but that would require better arguments
All cichlids of Central America are not Cichlasomines in orgin. Please let me know when you have evidence of breeding Caquetaia umbifera with anything other than another Caquetaia.
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:28 am

Nuchal Man wrote:Holy Crap! You just cited wikipedia as a source! Not only that, you cited Animal World (earlier, I missed it). Seriously Robert, as the accredited PhD that you claim to be you should know much better than that and use peer reviewed literature! Wikipedia is never a valid source, it's completely open to the public and there is a ton of misinformation of the site! It's sad if this is how you do research and you've been published in peer reviewed journals. I wish you would respond in more depth to some of the other evidence from peer reviewed sources posted by Willem, Ingo, and myself instead of redundantly stating you point over and over again (as you did in your latest post). It's easy for someone to throw around the title of PhD, but it doesn't mean you put forth good work in your field, and from what I've seen from your posts on the subject, I'd be really scared for the sake of the art of taxonomy if this is how you do work.
In fact the statement that all Central American Cichlids are suspected of being able to interbreed is absolutely erroneous. Loiselle (1983) updated in this very website , implies that Aequidens coerulopunctatus and Geophagus crenilabrus, native to Central America. are far too distinct to breed with Cichlasomines. Generalized statements may be easy to make, but seldom hold water if you haven't done your homework.
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Nuchal Man » Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:26 am

Seriously, you are still using wikipedia! First of all, Paul Loiselle didn't update wikipedia, and just because he (or anyone for that matter) has a citation from Loiselle on the site doesn't mean that he updated it! It also doesn't mean it is correct and it could be taken out of context when it was posted. Wikipedia is open for anyone to publish on, that is why it is not a valid source. It is full of incorrect information that anyone could post. This is why you should never use it as a source, it isn't valid. As the academic you claim to be you should know this and I hope you aren't teaching your students that it is a valid source. If you are, you are doing them a grave disservice.

Your argument is still terrible and obviously you are using very minimal facts as arguments that are still poor. I also assume you mean 'Geophagus' crassilabrus instead of Geophagus crenilabrus (which is not a species). An example of you obviously digging is that 'Geophagus' crassilabrus and Andinoacara (the new valid genus for the fish) coeruleopunctatus that are native in Central America. Neither is endemic to Central America and this is quite a stretch, they are both the extremes of the range for Geophagini and Cichlasomatini respectively. Are they technically Central American cichlids, yes, but almost all (except these two species!) are Heroine cichlids. classically Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus and 'Geophagus' crassilabrus, and you should know this if you did your research, are treated as South American cichlids in all phylogenetic studies as well as biogeographic studies (in peer reviewed journals mind you, which apparently you don't get the concept of). This is where your latest argument falls apart. This is what Bas as well as the rest of us are referring to when we stated many Central American cichlids will hybridize. We were actually talking about the radiations of fish that are Central American. Why were we doing this, because the fish you started this topic on are Heroine cichlids from Central America.

You need to do your homework as you claim to be an expert on cichlids and clearly have no clue what you're talking about! Also, please stop using wikipedia and other sources that are not peer reviewed in this taxonomical discussion. And please would you respond to some of the other scientific peer reviewed papers that the other posters including myself have referenced in this discussion as they are pertinent. If you'd like them, I will send them to you (although many should be open access) as you obviously need to educate yourself with the published literature in this field.

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Bas Pels » Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:54 am

RobertPrice wrote:
Bas Pels wrote:In all honesty, I can not see any argument in the first posting which convinces me

Amphilophus citrinellum and A. labiatum can interbreed. So what? I've seen Hypsophrys nicaraquensae and Cryptoheros nigrocfasciatus interbreed. Amphilophus trimaculatus ans "Cichlasoma istlanum" interbred in my house - and a year later the offspring also produced swimming fry. I found a hybrid of Herichthys labiatum (although, it could have been H panosticticus) with Cryptoheros septemfasciatus in a swarm of C. septemfasciatus. This is not an argument.

All cichlids of Central america are suspected of being able to interbreed. Species have to be defined differently. And this possible interbreeding might even be the reason why it is so hard to draw conclusions from DNA searches: they quite often contradict each other, perhaps due to this possibility of dealing with hybrids, which later crossed back into one of the parent species. I could not say.

If one would compare a man of the pygmy tribes with a man from Norway, I'm quite certain a extra terrestrial taxonimist, who would know nothing about humans, would from a morphological point of view think about two species - but we know better. Further, all taxonimical research in the genus Homo has to do with sensitive politics, and therefore I think it is better to keep Homo sapiens out of any taxonomical discussion.

I do agree A citrinellum and A. labiatum are very closely related, and they might even be the same species - but that would require better arguments
All cichlids of Central America are not Cichlasomines in orgin. Please let me know when you have evidence of breeding Caquetaia umbifera with anything other than another Caquetaia.
A posting later you mentioned "Geophagus' crassilabris and Adinocara (not Aequidens) coeruleopunctatus as central american species which not crossbreed with the others. This is true, but, as explained later bu Nuchal Man, these species live in Central America, but are South American in everything but the place where they happen to live. Most likely, they are a new (natural) invasion into Central America, which may succeed.

The eastern part of Panama does contain much more south american species, such as Sturiosoma Panamensae, Lasiancisatrus sp and so on.

But Caquetaia - indeed a Heroine specie - are south American, and therefore not enclosed in what I wrote

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by cichla » Sat Aug 11, 2012 5:09 am

Dear Robert,
you are mixing up nomenclature with taxonomy and the different meanings of the term 'Species' (see Mayr 2000). Concerning the species concept: the absolute majority of taxonomists are following the evolutionary (or lineage) species concept (e.g. QUEIROZ 2007, Mayden 1997). [Please don't mix 'the evolutionary species concept' with the 'theory of evolution'.]
A species may developed much faster than thought (actually it may taken much less than 10000 yrs). See here: http://royalsociety.org/news/fastest-marine-speciation/ Ersnt Mayr (1963) mentioned that species evolved within a few hundreds of years or even less. The speed with which new species are developing is often underestimated.
I agree and endorse the post by Sam about the use of wiki as a source (it is not a serious source at all) and his well written statements about the classification of the species. Please consider also the contributions (above) by Willem and Bas.
I don't know how many species of Midas are there. The number of species recognized as independent lineages is under discussion for sure (see post by Bojan). However, your statements make taxonomically little sense.
Best, IS
--
QUEIROZ, E. De (2007): Species Concepts and Species Delimitation. Syst. Biol. 56(6):879–886
Mayden, R. L. (1997): A hierarchy of species concepts: The denouement in the saga of the species problem. 381–424 in Species: The units of biodiversity.
Mayr, E. (1963): Animal Species and Evolution.
Mayr, E. (2000): What evolution is.

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Mark Smith » Sat Aug 11, 2012 10:01 am

Hi Robert

May I ask where you obtained your PhD?

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:01 am

Bas Pels wrote:In all honesty, I can not see any argument in the first posting which convinces me

Amphilophus citrinellum and A. labiatum can interbreed. So what? I've seen Hypsophrys nicaraquensae and Cryptoheros nigrocfasciatus interbreed. Amphilophus trimaculatus ans "Cichlasoma istlanum" interbred in my house - and a year later the offspring also produced swimming fry. I found a hybrid of Herichthys labiatum (although, it could have been H panosticticus) with Cryptoheros septemfasciatus in a swarm of C. septemfasciatus. This is not an argument.

All cichlids of Central america are suspected of being able to interbreed. Species have to be defined differently. And this possible interbreeding might even be the reason why it is so hard to draw conclusions from DNA searches: they quite often contradict each other, perhaps due to this possibility of dealing with hybrids, which later crossed back into one of the parent species. I could not say.

If one would compare a man of the pygmy tribes with a man from Norway, I'm quite certain a extra terrestrial taxonimist, who would know nothing about humans, would from a morphological point of view think about two species - but we know better. Further, all taxonimical research in the genus Homo has to do with sensitive politics, and therefore I think it is better to keep Homo sapiens out of any taxonomical discussion.

I do agree A citrinellum and A. labiatum are very closely related, and they might even be the same species - but that would require better arguments
The differences between races may or may not be as siginficant as the differences between subspecies, thowver subspecies are traditionally allopatric, wheras races can occur in the same place. I understand the the term "race" may still be considered pejorative as it has been applied to human beings, but htat does mean we eliminate race from taxonomy.
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Bas Pels » Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:15 am

Robert

I would like to point out YOU used the word rase, I did not. For very good reasons.

For the rest, I think it is time now to provide arguments, or acknowledge you don't have them

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RD. » Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:34 pm

Thanks to Sam, Willem, and everyone else that took the time to respond with such in-depth & well thought out comments, to Robert Price's (cough-cough) proposal.

Personally I read absolutely nothing by Mr. Price that would convince me that A. citrinellum & A. labiatum are one in the same. Nice try, but no cigar .......

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Tue Aug 14, 2012 11:31 pm

As this will my final post, I would like to thank those who have added constructively to the conversion. In 1949, Amadon proposed the 75% rule, which was adopted worldwide by a majority of systematists. It states "two poluations belong to different subspecies if 75% of population A share the same characters as the rest of the population (Amadon, 1949).

Ernst Mayr (2002) further elaborated "Races are not something, specifically human; races occur in a large number of species of animals . The terms subspecies and geographic race are used interchangeably in the taxonomic literature."

It is and has been my contention that citrinellus and labiatus , differ on the level of simple race, as they are not geogrpahically isolated enough to qualify as subspecies as therefore differ from the average somewhat less. Such a definition of race has been applied to other organisms from time to time. Nonetheless, I feel we have engaged in semantics trying to justify different parameters to assess how different they are. There is too much subjectivity in systematics today, and we sorely need to either readopt the 75% rule, or convene a caucus to set general rules for definition of species, subspecies and race otherwise disagreement and sometimes rancor will continue.

References:

Amadon, D. 1949. Condor 51:251-258

Mayr, Ernst 2002. The Biology of Race and the Concept of Equality
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Bas Pels » Wed Aug 15, 2012 1:45 am

As I don't have the Amadon paper at hand, I can not read what he proposed specifically - but his paper was before the world knew about DNA and its role

Therefore, it must be referring to morfic differences, and how can one quantify morfic differences? How much differ fishes when one has 3 hard spines and 15 soft ones in its fin and the other 5 hard ones and 13 soft one?

One can say the amount of hard spines differs (but that would ignore the fact that 4 differs lees from 3 than 5) and the amount of soft ones differs - but that ignores the fact that the sum is the same. Or is it right to ignore that fact?

I would not know, to answer this question one would have to know whether a hard spine can turn into a soft one, or not. In the first case, the only thing what changed was 2 hard spines became soft, in the latter 2 hard spines disappeared and 2 soft ones appeared. This is not something one can rule in a general paper, which - I understand - cover not only all fishes, but most likely all vertebrates, perhaps even all animals.

The Amadon paper might have its value, but as far as I know, only bacteria are sorted on such a rule: If the DNA differs less then 10 % it is the same subspecies, if it is less than a certain value, perhaps 75 % it is the same species and so on.

But for mammels, and fish, this would not work: We have a lot of DNA which is not used, it just sits there ans exists. Differences in this junk DNA don't change anything, and would, therefore not qualify any border. Only the coding parts (sense DNA) are important, but that implies we should know what each part does - which we don't.

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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by RobertPrice » Wed Aug 15, 2012 3:51 am

Nuchal Man wrote:Seriously, you are still using wikipedia! First of all, Paul Loiselle didn't update wikipedia, and just because he (or anyone for that matter) has a citation from Loiselle on the site doesn't mean that he updated it! It also doesn't mean it is correct and it could be taken out of context when it was posted. Wikipedia is open for anyone to publish on, that is why it is not a valid source. It is full of incorrect information that anyone could post. This is why you should never use it as a source, it isn't valid. As the academic you claim to be you should know this and I hope you aren't teaching your students that it is a valid source. If you are, you are doing them a grave disservice.

Your argument is still terrible and obviously you are using very minimal facts as arguments that are still poor. I also assume you mean 'Geophagus' crassilabrus instead of Geophagus crenilabrus (which is not a species). An example of you obviously digging is that 'Geophagus' crassilabrus and Andinoacara (the new valid genus for the fish) coeruleopunctatus that are native in Central America. Neither is endemic to Central America and this is quite a stretch, they are both the extremes of the range for Geophagini and Cichlasomatini respectively. Are they technically Central American cichlids, yes, but almost all (except these two species!) are Heroine cichlids. classically Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus and 'Geophagus' crassilabrus, and you should know this if you did your research, are treated as South American cichlids in all phylogenetic studies as well as biogeographic studies (in peer reviewed journals mind you, which apparently you don't get the concept of). This is where your latest argument falls apart. This is what Bas as well as the rest of us are referring to when we stated many Central American cichlids will hybridize. We were actually talking about the radiations of fish that are Central American. Why were we doing this, because the fish you started this topic on are Heroine cichlids from Central America.

You need to do your homework as you claim to be an expert on cichlids and clearly have no clue what you're talking about! Also, please stop using wikipedia and other sources that are not peer reviewed in this taxonomical discussion. And please would you respond to some of the other scientific peer reviewed papers that the other posters including myself have referenced in this discussion as they are pertinent. If you'd like them, I will send them to you (although many should be open access) as you obviously need to educate yourself with the published literature in this field.
I'm dismayed that you have trouble reading. I said Paul Loiselle was updated on this website (Cichlid Room Companion), not Wikipedia. As for attacks on Wikipedia and Animal-World, these sites try to simplify technicalities for the hoi polloi, but they are very often correct.

And, as for your contention that these websites are open for anyone to publish on, let me explain the difference between a peer-reviewed journal and a forum. I chose Cichlid Room Companion as I find it's standards extremely high, but it is not peer reviewed. As a former ASIH referee, I can tell you that peer reviwed journals do not (except very exceptionally) accept papers without comment or corrections , and once the referees have decided that a revision is accptable, it is published. Almost never are refutations allowed. I value the opinions of many on this forum, but all members can post!
Robert Price, Ph.d

Nuchal Man
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Re: Proposed Sympatry of Midas and Red Devil Cichlids

Post by Nuchal Man » Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:36 am

Robert, I'm sorry if your reference to Paul Loiselle was citing cichlidae.com, that still doesn't make your argument using Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus as well 'Geophagus' crassilabrus a good one. They are classically considered South American cichlids and are so in every respect to their ecology and morphology, they simple happen to be the Northern range of their respective genera and barely break into Central America. It is still an extremely poor argument and a reach.

As far as using wikipedia and Animal World, I'm not attacking the websites. They do have intentions of simplifying what is out ther, but the way you used them was completely inappropriate. You used them as a source for a scientific argument. These web sites although they may have good intentions are notorious for misinformation. wikipedia is full of bad information, not just in the field of science. Anyone can edit wikipedia, which is a fact, the public writes it. The fact of the matter is they are not peer reviewed sources and are not appropriate for research in any way, shape, or form. They aren't even gray literature.

As far as peer review, you still don't seem to get it. You are the one who used non peer reviewed literature. No one on this forum would consider this site a peer reviewed source in any ways, it is simply a forum for the public where we discuss cichlids. I'm quite aware of the peer review process as I have a few papers that are either in review or are getting sent to review soon to high quality journals such as Nature. It is a long process with lots of comments from reviewers and it takes a while to tweak it the paper to exactly publication. I'm sorry Robert, but I'm having a hard time believing you've actually experienced the process. I've searched a variety of the scientific databases for papers published by you on cichlids or herps as you claim to be an expert and haven't found anything! Are you published at all? I've also asked many of my fellow researchers who are members of ASIH, including my advisers, some of which have served on the board in the past, and none have heard of you. I'd really like to see some of the literature you've put forth if you would care to share what journals we could find them in as I'm wondering if your research is always at these questionable standards.

You seem to value the opinions of the members of the forum who would agree with you, whichh seems to be very few. You have not responded to any of the other literature I or others have cited in my arguments which is very pertinent to your supposed synonymy of Amphilophus labiatus and Amphilophus citrinellus (even though I have offered to send you the papers I've cited, offer still stands). I'm beginning to think you are ignorant to the published research that others have cited through this thread.

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