RE: NANFA-L-- Spring Fling - The Preliminary Picture.

Dave Neely (
Mon, 14 Mar 2005 19:31:42 -0600

Todd, why is a Mobile vs. Tennessee break "good," but a Duck vs. Tennessee
break less believable? :)

Actually, there's a fair bit of additional diversity within stigmaeum and
jessiae, including a Duck endemic. The only reason it hasn't been published
is that the grad student in question took a semi-lucrative career in
consulting over scraping by in "icthyoacademia." No speculation, just cold,
hard data.

What do we stand to lose by not knowing this kind of information? Some of
the ecological differences that people notice (i.e., "stigmaeum" is uncommon
in the Caney Fork, but common in parts of the Duck) can sometimes be
directly tied to intrinsic differences between unrecognized species and
their habitat preferences. By recognizing poytypic species, we sell our
diversity short, and risk losing peripheral populations to what may seem as
a trivial bit of development.

ps., can't wait to see your pictures. Blenny darters are one of my all time


>Actually, I was calling one thing the wrong thing the other day and even
>mislabelled in my photos. The speckled darter (E. stigmaeum) occur in the
>Mobile drainage, whereas the blueside darter (E. jessiae), which we were
>looking-in-in your creek, occur in the Tennessee. Now this is a geographic
>genetic difference I can totally buy... But I'm sure there's all sorts of
>speculation on what each second order stream in either drainage offers
>I can't wait to get Jeff's pictures. We'll have closeup macros of all
>these kinds and hopefully not cropped like the tail on my little cf. buddy
>I photographed in Shelbyville.

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