Late pleistocene desiccation of Lake Victoria and rapid evolution of cichlid fishes

Thomas C. Johnson, Christopher A. Scholz, Michael R. Talbot, Kerry Kelts, R. D. Ricketts, Gideon Ngobi, Kristina Beuning, Immacculate Ssemmanda, J. W. McGill

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378 Scopus citations

Abstract

Lake Victoria is the largest lake in Africa and harbors more than 300 endemic species of haplochromine cichlid fish. Seismic reflection profiles and piston cores show that the lake not only was at a low stand but dried up completely during the Late Pleistocene, before 12,400 carbon-14 years before the present. These results imply that the rate of speciation of cichlid fish in this tropical lake has been extremely rapid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1091-1093
Number of pages3
JournalScience
Volume273
Issue number5278
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 23 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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    Johnson, T. C., Scholz, C. A., Talbot, M. R., Kelts, K., Ricketts, R. D., Ngobi, G., Beuning, K., Ssemmanda, I., & McGill, J. W. (1996). Late pleistocene desiccation of Lake Victoria and rapid evolution of cichlid fishes. Science, 273(5278), 1091-1093. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.273.5278.1091