Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Proc Biol Sci. 2002 Feb 7;269(1488):317-26.

Projecting mechanics into morphospace: disparity in the feeding system of labrid fishes.

Author information

Center for Population Biology, and Section of Evolution and Ecology, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA.


In no group of organisms has the link between species richness, morphological disparity, disparity in mechanics and functional or ecological diversification been made explicit. As a step towards integrating these measures of diversity, we examine how the mechanics of the anterior-jaw four-bar linkages of 104 species of Great Barrier Reef (GBR) labrid fishes maps into a scale-independent morphospace. As predicted from theory, no relationship exists between overall size and the mechanics of velocity and force transmission in labrid anterior-jaw linkages. Nonetheless, mechanics associated with the anterior jaw appear to have constrained diversification of labrid anterior-jaw morphology. Furthermore, simulations depict a generally nonlinear relationship between the length of individual links and transmission of motion. In addition, no relationship was found between morphological disparity and mechanical disparity among the most species-rich labrid groups from the GBR. It is also established that regions of morphospace equivalent in morphological disparity differ over nearly an order of magnitude in mechanical disparity. These results illustrate that without an explicit interpretation of the consequences of per unit change in morphology, conclusions about diversification drawn only from morphological disparity may be misleading.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center