Re: NANFA-L-- Pigeon Mtn dace/chub hybrid
Thu, 21 Jul 2005 15:07:59 -0500

However, hybrids do regularly occur in nature. Minnows that spawn in
pebble piles in streams, such as southern redbelly dace/Luxilus hybrids
are known, as are Notropis nubilus hybrids with other pebble spawning
forms. Hybrid sunfish regularly show up in farm ponds, though as Bruce
commented, fish thought to be hybrids often are not -- just different

Very rarely, a hybridization event has produced a novel species -- an
occurance that requires more than one unusual biological event-in-one
time. A famous example is the Amazon molly, a clonal species that
originated perhaps 100K years ago as a result of a hybridization event
between sailfin and Mexican mollies. Hybridization sometimes occurs
because of habitats that are disturbed, or because of events that
result in individuals of disparate species being together in
microhabitats that one or the other might not usually occupy. During
an extreme drought on the Galapagos Islands a few years back, two
species of Darwin's finches hybridized in several pairs, and helped to
confirm some ideas about the biology and ancestry of both.

We still don't know everything about what a species is.

David L. McNeely, Ph.D., Professor of Biology
Langston University; P.O. Box 1500
Langston, OK 73050; email:
telephone: (405) 466-6025; fax: 405) 466-3307
home page

"Where are we going?" "I don't know, are we there yet?"
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