Volume 44 Issue 4
Jul.  2023
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Article Contents
Laurent Legendre, Julie Rode, Isabelle Germon, Marie Pavie, Carla Quiviger, Maxime Policarpo, Julien Leclercq, Stéphane Père, Julien Fumey, Carole Hyacinthe, Patricia Ornelas-García, Luis Espinasa, Sylvie Rétaux, Didier Casane. Genetic identification and reiterated captures suggest that the Astyanax mexicanus El Pachón cavefish population is closed and declining. Zoological Research, 2023, 44(4): 701-711. doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2022.481
Citation: Laurent Legendre, Julie Rode, Isabelle Germon, Marie Pavie, Carla Quiviger, Maxime Policarpo, Julien Leclercq, Stéphane Père, Julien Fumey, Carole Hyacinthe, Patricia Ornelas-García, Luis Espinasa, Sylvie Rétaux, Didier Casane. Genetic identification and reiterated captures suggest that the Astyanax mexicanus El Pachón cavefish population is closed and declining. Zoological Research, 2023, 44(4): 701-711. doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2022.481

Genetic identification and reiterated captures suggest that the Astyanax mexicanus El Pachón cavefish population is closed and declining

doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2022.481
Astyanax mexicanus: fin clips from surface and cave morphs of A. mexicanus were sampled during field expeditions, under the field permits SGPA/DGVS/02438/16, SGPA/DGVS/1893/19, and SGPA/DGVS/03334/22 provided to P.O.G and S.R. by the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales of Mexico (SEMARNAT).
The R script “GenerateIndividual.r” can be found in GitHub “jmorode/Genetics”.
Supplementary data to this article can be found online.
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
L.L., S.R., and D.C. conceived and designed the research; L.L., J.R., M.P., M.P., J.L., S.P., J.F., C.H., P.O.G., L.E., S.R., and D.C. conducted field surveys and collected samples; I.G., M.P., and C.Q. performed the molecular work; J.R., M.P., J.F., S.R., and D.C. analyzed the data; L.L., J.R., P.O.G., L.E., S.R., and D.C. wrote the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.
$Current affiliation: Zoological Institute, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland
#Authors contributed equally to this work
Funds:  This work was supported by a CNRS MITI (Mission pour les Initiatives Transverses et Interdisciplinaires) grant “Expérimentation en Milieux Extrêmes” to S.R. and collaborative grants from Agence Nationale de la Recherche (BLINDTEST) and Institut Diversité Ecologie et Evolution du Vivant to S.R. and D.C.
More Information
  • The sizes of Astyanax mexicanus blind cavefish populations of North-East Mexico are demographic parameters of great importance for investigating a variety of ecological, evolutionary, and conservation issues. However, few estimates have been obtained. For these mobile animals living in an environment difficult to explore as a whole, methods based on capture-mark-recapture are appropriate, but their feasibility and interpretation of results depend on several assumptions that must be carefully examined. Here, we provide evidence that minimally invasive genetic identification from captures at different time intervals (three days and three years) can give insights into cavefish population size dynamics as well as other important demographic parameters of interest. We also provide tools to calibrate sampling and genotyping efforts necessary to reach a given level of precision. Our results suggest that the El Pachón cave population is currently very small, of an order of magnitude of a few hundreds of individuals, and is distributed in a relatively isolated area. The probable decline in population size in the El Pachón cave since the last census in 1971 raises serious conservation issues.
  • Astyanax mexicanus: fin clips from surface and cave morphs of A. mexicanus were sampled during field expeditions, under the field permits SGPA/DGVS/02438/16, SGPA/DGVS/1893/19, and SGPA/DGVS/03334/22 provided to P.O.G and S.R. by the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales of Mexico (SEMARNAT).
    The R script “GenerateIndividual.r” can be found in GitHub “jmorode/Genetics”.
    Supplementary data to this article can be found online.
    The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
    L.L., S.R., and D.C. conceived and designed the research; L.L., J.R., M.P., M.P., J.L., S.P., J.F., C.H., P.O.G., L.E., S.R., and D.C. conducted field surveys and collected samples; I.G., M.P., and C.Q. performed the molecular work; J.R., M.P., J.F., S.R., and D.C. analyzed the data; L.L., J.R., P.O.G., L.E., S.R., and D.C. wrote the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.
    $Current affiliation: Zoological Institute, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland
    #Authors contributed equally to this work
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