, Volume 74, Issue 1, pp 49-53

Multivariate morphometric analysis of two varieties of Littorina saxatilis from the Swedish west coast

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Abstract

Shell variation in Littorina saxatilis Olivi (=L. rudis) is examined with different techniques of multivariate analysis (canonical variate-, multiple discriminant-, principal component-, and principal coordinate analysis). In bivariate projections of the analyses, two populations, spatially only 60 m apart, but from different habitats, showed a phenotypic separation without overlap. One habitat is a boulder shore, while the other is a rocky cliff. A sample, geographically and environmentally intermediate to the exposed and sheltered populations, covered completely the morphologic gap between the two former groups, indicating a clinal variation in morphology over the environmental gradient exposed — sheltered. From this it is concluded that the two phenotypically distinct populations belong to the same species.

Communicated by T. Fenchel, Aarhus