This study aimed at examining resource partitioning both at the inter- and intraspecific levels between paired chondrostome fishes: Chondrostoma nasus, the nase, C. toxostoma, the sofie, and their hybrid. The study was performed in the south of France and concerned a main river (the Durance River) and a tributary (the Buech River). In these rivers, C. nasus was an introduced species, originating in central Europe, and C. toxostoma was an endemic congener, in the south of France. Stable isotope analysis was used to analyse trophic and spatial niches. Isotopic differences indicated that individuals from the three taxa (C. nasus, C. toxostoma and their hybrid) have different spatial origins. At the interspecific level, the different chondrostomes originating from the Buech River showed a high level of trophic niche overlap. At the intraspecific level, nase individuals originating from the different spatial origins showed a resource polymorphism; differences in morphology were associated with variation in behaviour and life history traits. Their coexistence was a likely outcome of resource polymorphism. This study provides an example of the importance of considering the link between intra- and interspecific interactions to gain an understanding of the mechanisms driving the coexistence of species-pairs. (C) 2010 Academie des sciences. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)