Ichthyological Research

, Volume 48, Issue 3, pp 247–255 | Cite as

Genetic and morphological identification of Sebastiscus tertius in the East China Sea (Scorpaeniformes: Scorpaenidae)

  • Masaya Katoh
  • Muneharu Tokimura


The allozymes and morphology of 110 specimens of three Sebastiscus species (S. marmoratus, S. tertius, and S. albofasciatus) in the East China Sea and near Japan were compared. Results of 20 allozyme loci studied showed that all three species were closely related (Nei's unbiased genetic distances, 0.057–0.133) but could be identified on the basis of informative loci with a few exceptions. Initial identification based on color patterns agreed with allozyme identification in more than 98% of Sebastiscus specimens and agreed completely in S. albofasciatus. One specimen that was initially identified as S. marmoratus because of the dark body color was actually S. tertius according to two informative allozyme loci. Number of pectoral fin rays differed between S. marmoratus (18 or fewer, 98%) and S. tertius (19 or more, 85%) in this study. The previously mentioned dark specimen had 19 pectoral fin rays, which are characteristic in S. tertius. Using seven morphological measurements, canonical discriminant analysis between S. marmoratus and S. tertius classified less than 90% of specimens into the original groups (species). Some specimens of S. tertius resembled S. marmoratus in body shape and vice versa. A combination of genetic characterization and morphological examination is necessary to identify S. marmoratus and S. tertius accurately. Distinction based on allozymes and color patterns with numbers of pectoral fin rays should provide satisfactory identification.

Key words Allozyme Protein electrophoresis Morphology Sebastiscus 


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Copyright information

© The Ichthyological Society of Japan 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masaya Katoh
    • 1
  • Muneharu Tokimura
    • 2
  1. 1.Ishigaki Tropical Station, Seikai National Fisheries Research Institute, Fisheries Research Agency, 148-446 Fukai-Ohta, Ishigaki, Okinawa 907-0451, Japan (e-mail:
  2. 2.National Research Institute of Fisheries Science, Fisheries Research Agency, 2-12-4 Fukuura, Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 236-8648, Japan (e-mail:

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