Scientia Marina, Vol 80, No 1 (2016)

Larval development and shape variation of the kelpfish Myxodes viridis (Teleostei: Clinidae)

Francisca Zavala-Muñoz
Laboratorio de Ictioplancton (LABITI), Escuela de Biología Marina, Facultad de Ciencias del Mar y de Recursos Naturales, Universidad de Valparaíso , Chile

Mauricio F. Landaeta
Laboratorio de Ictioplancton (LABITI), Escuela de Biología Marina, Facultad de Ciencias del Mar y de Recursos Naturales, Universidad de Valparaíso , Chile

Valentina Bernal-Durán
Laboratorio de Ictioplancton (LABITI), Escuela de Biología Marina, Facultad de Ciencias del Mar y de Recursos Naturales, Universidad de Valparaíso , Chile

Guillermo A. Herrera
Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción , Chile

Donald I. Brown
Unidad de Biología de la Reproducción y del Desarrollo, Instituto de Biología, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Valparaíso , Chile


Larval development and shape ontogeny of the kelpfish Myxodes viridis (Clinidae) are described for the first time. A total of 214 individuals ranging between 3.51 and 23.09 mm standard length collected off central Chile were assessed employing classic and geometric morphometrics, illustration with camera lucida and a double-staining technique for cartilaginous and bone structure observation. Based on characteristics such as yolk sac presence and fin formation, six stages of larval development were differentiated: yolk sac, preflexion, flexion, early postflexion, late postflexion and juvenile. Shape changes during development are subtle and occur smoothly, being more significant in the head and preanal length, and ontogenetic allometry accounts for almost 15%. Cartilage formation takes place first at the branchial arches and cranium; then hypural, haemal and neural arches are consecutively formed. Bony structure ossification occurs late in the development. Vertebral centra ossify directly, without cartilaginous matrix replacement.


Myxodes viridis, Clinidae family; early ontogenetic development; ichthyoplankton; geometric morphometrics; classic morphometrics; osteology

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