Population structure of four South African goby species
The objective of this programme is to determine whether there is population structure among estuarine gobies of the eastern and southern coast of South Africa. Four estuarine goby species that are endemic to southern Africa were selected: Caffrogobius gilchristi, C. nudiceps, Psammogobius knysnaenis and Glossogobius callidus. These benthic species are an important component of the fish biomass and the food web, and therefore play an important role in estuarine ecology.
The species differ in their dependence on the estuary for their early life stages, with P. knysnaenis being the least dependent and G. callidus the most dependent. Each of the species of these genera is treated as a single large population. Elucidated in a phylogenetic context, we expect the genetic structure of these goby populations to reveal a great deal about the history of subdivision and gene flow among the populations, and about the history of interactions between the two Caffrogobius species.