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Volume 44 - Number 1 - 2009
Article

 

Abyssal fishes from the southern most tip of South America component of the by-catch at the longline toothfish fishery´s (Dissostichus eleginoides Smitt, 1898)

Pablo R. Reyes1, Juan P. Torres2 y Esteban M. Reyes3

 

1Ingendesa. Grupo de Levantamiento de Líneas de Base, Subgerencia de Medio Ambiente, Santa Rosa 79, Piso 9°, Santiago, Chile

2Instituto de Ecología y Evolución, Universidad Austral de Chile. Casilla 567, Valdivia, Chile

3Escuela de Veterinaria. Facultad de Ciencias Veterinarias, Universidad Austral de Chile. Casilla 567 Valdivia, Chile

 

E-mail: prrlt@ingendesa.cl

 

In this paper, the diversity and composition of the abyssal fishes (1,000-2,250 m) from the South Patagonia archipelago, including Cape Horn, Diego Ramírez Islands and north Drake Passage, southwestern Pacific (52°43´S-57°05´S) are described. Eight Osteichthyes species were detected, belonging to 4 orders and 5 families. The higher diversity of species was represented by the order Gadiformes, with 4 species of Macrouridae and 2 species of Moridae, followed by the abundance of Perciformes, with one species of Nototheniidae. The family Nototheniidae had the predominant biomass in the area, followed by Macrouridae. Synaphobranchidae (Anguilliformes) and Liparidae (Scorpaeniformes) were less abundant, both with one species. The distribution and biogeographical patterns of the analyzed fishes show a strong contrast with those observed in coastal Patagonian fishes, which allowed us to recognize two independent biogeographical units, according to the depth. The deep sea fishes detected in Patagonia are mainly circum-Antarctic species, present in the southwest and southeast Pacific, southwest and southeast Atlantic, Indian Ocean and Southern Ocean due to the Antarctic plate. This determines the distribution patterns of deep sea fishes in the Southern Hemisphere and provides access to the adjacent plates. Thus while the coastal fishes have a latitudinal distribution pattern these fishes have a Gondwanan, longitudinal distribution pattern

 

Key words: Biogeography, plate tectonics, Patagonia, Cape Horns, Diego Ramírez Islands, Drake Passage

 

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Abyssal fishes from the southern most tip of South America component of the by-catch at the longline toothfish fishery´s (Dissostichus eleginoides Smitt, 1898)
 
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