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Turkish Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 2020, Vol 20, Num, 2     (Pages: 159-169)

Species Identification Among Morphologically-Similar Caranx species

Shenna Kate M. Torres 1-2 ,Brian S. Santos 1-2

1 University of the Philippines, Natural Sciences Research Institute, Diliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines
2 University of the Philippines, Institute of Biology, Diliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines
DOI : 10.4194/1303-2712-v20_2_08 Viewed : 1060 - Downloaded : 1884 Accurate identification of species is important in assessing biodiversity and in conservation and population management strategies. Species with similar morphology, however, could be difficult to identify correctly. Published papers have reported on Caranx species that have been incorrectly identified and careful analysis is needed when identifying these species. In this study, 21 specimens from the genus Caranx were identified using DNA barcoding. Specimens were collected from Batangas, Philippines, where freshwater Caranx, which are about 50% more expensive, are present. Using morphological characteristics, C. ignobilis and C. sexfasciatus were identified correctly while one C. papuensis specimen was identified as C. sexfasciatus. Barcodes for three species, namely C. ignobilis, C. sexfasciatus, and C. papuensis, were detected based on cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) sequences. With the addition of Caranx COI sequences from GenBank, the calculated average K2P distance among species (8.19%), was higher than the average K2P distance within species (0.30%). Analysis of all available COI sequences of C. sexfasciatus from GenBank showed multiple cases of likely misidentification in other studies. Geometric morphometric analyses revealed morphological differences between specimens barcoded as C. papuensis and C. sexfasciatus that could aid in identifying the species. Keywords : Caranx, Cytochrome c oxidase I, Jacks, Freshwater ecosystem, Trevally