, Volume 68, Issue 4, pp 507–511 | Cite as

Inter-specific hybridization underlies phenotypic variability in Daphnia populations

  • Hans Georg Wolf
  • Mona A. Mort
Original Papers


In the glacial lakes of the Palaearctic three species of Cladocera commonly coexist: Daphnia hyalina, D. galeata, and D. cucullata. Frequently these populations contain not only animals which are morphologically typical for the species but also individuals of an intermediate phenotype. Electrophoretic investigations of allozyme-patterns in morphologically typical individuals reveal that each species is fixed for a different allele at the GOT locus. Morphologically intermediate animals are heterozygous for the alleles of the two species which they resemble. The allelic pattern at other loci is also consistent with the assumption that morphological intermediates are formed via interspecific hybridization. Very few backcrosses between galeata-hyalina hybrids and their parent species are found, and there is no indication of gene flow between D. cucullata and the other species.


Gene Flow Interspecific Hybridization Parent Species Phenotypic Variability Typical Individual 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Georg Wolf
    • 1
  • Mona A. Mort
    • 1
  1. 1.Abteilung ÖkophysiologieMax-Planck-Institut für LimnologiePlönFederal Republic of Germany

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