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Analysis of the biogeographic influence of Proto-Berbice in the distribution of species of the Apistogramma steindachneri species group

Grant number: 13/26992-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2014
Effective date (End): October 31, 2014
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Claudio de Oliveira
Grantee:Ricardo Britzke
Supervisor: Hernán López-Fernández
Host Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IBB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil
Research place: Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), Canada  
Associated to the scholarship:11/00269-4 - Phylogenetic relationships of the genus Apistogramma (Perciformes, Cichlidae) and phylogeography of the species Apistogramma agassizi, BP.DR


The genus Apistogramma currently comprises 83 species of small fish known as dwarf cichlids, distributed only in the cis-Andean basins of South America. The Steindachneri species group has their current distribution in Suriname (Coesewjine, Suriname, Sipaliwini, Kabalebo rivers), Guiana (Essequibo, Mazaruni, Rupununi and Berbice rivers), Brazil (Takutu, Ireng, Contigo, Uatumã, Urubu, Negro and Manacapuru rivers) and Venezuela (Venamo river). In the past, all these drainages were part of the paleo drainage Proto-Berbice. This river system had its headwaters in an ancient mountain range (paleo-divisor Proto-Berbice/Amazonas), represented today by Parima, Demini, Apiaú, Mucajaí, Mocidade, Lua Anuauá, Acaraí, Pakaraima, Imataca and Kanuku Hills. Today, several tributaries of the Proto-Berbice, are Amazon tributaries or Atlantic drainages, with its headwaters in the Guyana Shield. In this context the main objective of this project is to test biogeographic and phylogenetic hypothesis about the A. steindachneri species group, including relationships among lineages within this group and and the potential role of the Proto-Berbice drainage in the origin of this distribution. With the results that will be obtained, we intend to assist in the historical reconstruction of the Proto-Berbice drainage and its effect on the modern distribution of Guiana Shield freshwater fishes. (AU)

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