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Bilateral Asymmetry in Paired Meristic Characters of Pacific Salmon

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Title:Bilateral Asymmetry in Paired Meristic Characters of Pacific Salmon
Authors:Landrum, B.J.
Date Issued:Apr 1966
Publisher:University of Hawai'i Press
Citation:Landrum BJ. 1966. Bilateral asymmetry in paired meristic characters of Pacific salmon. Pac Sci 20(2): 193-202.
Abstract:The presence, extent, and direction of bilateral asymmetries of
lateral line scales, gill rakers, branchiostegal rays, and pectoral fin rays of sockeye,
chum, and pink salmon were examined. Some asymmetries were found in all characters
in each species. Asymmetries, considering all species combined, occurred in
approximately 72% of the lateral line scale comparisons, 59% of the gill raker comparisons, 70% of the branchiostegal ray comparisons, and 26% of the pectoral fin
ray comparisons. Bilateral variation in these characters was not conclusively related
to sex of the specimens ; however, some tendency toward greater asymmetry in
branchiostegals of females was shown. Complete evaluation of this tendency will
require further examination.
Occurrences of asymmetries were evaluated in relation to the reliability of substituting
counts from the opposite side when the chosen side was lost or severely
damaged. Substitution of lateral line scales of sockeye salmon appeared to be
feasible, but in chum salmon the right side counts were significantly greater.
(Scale counts from pink salmon were not available, because of the extreme difficulty
in obtaining reliable counts of the characteristically small scales.) Gill raker
counts from sockeye salmon were found not to be interchangeable, as the right
side counts significantly exceeded those of the left. In pink and chum salmon,
bilateral variations in gill rakers appeared to be equal. Branchiostegal counts from
the left sides of all species were significantly greater than those of the right. It was
indicated that, for all species, pectoral fin ray counts from either side could be
substituted reliably.
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 20, Number 2, 1966

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