What happened to the cichlids in Lake Victoria?

What happened to the cichlids in Lake Victoria?

A UC Davis Evolution and Ecology team has discovered that cichlid fishes in Africa’s Lake Victoria have suffered a unique and unexpected effect of evolutionary adaptation: mass extinction.

Are there still cichlids in Lake Victoria?

Today less than one percent of the mass of fish caught in Lake Victoria comes from cichlids. More than half of the cichlid species may now be extinct or close to extinction.

How many cichlids are in Lake Victoria?

Natural selection exploited pre-existing genetic variation in hybrid cichlids. WAIMEA, HAWAII—In the shallow waters of Lake Victoria, the world’s largest tropical lake, swim some 500 species of cichlid fish with a dizzying variety of appearances, habitats, and behaviors.

Where is Nile perch fish found?

Nile perch, (species Lates niloticus), large food and game fish of the family Centropomidae (order Perciformes), found in the Nile and other rivers and lakes of Africa. A large-mouthed fish, the Nile perch is greenish or brownish above and silvery below and grows to about 1.8 m (6 feet) and 140 kg (300 pounds).

Do Nile perch eat cichlids?

Haplochromine cichlids used to be the main prey of the introduced Nile perch, Lates niloticus, in Lake Victoria.

What eats the Nile perch?

Nile perch have no natural predators in Lake Victoria and eat anything from zooplankton and invertebrates to other fish and even members of their own species.

Is Nile perch good eating?

Due to its size and preference for shallow water, the Nile perch is relatively easy to catch and its almost boneless white flesh is particularly good for eating.

Why do Nile perch get so big?

Why were Nile perch introduced to Lake Victoria? The huge fish were intentionally introduced to the lake in the 1950s to boost the fishing industry.

Is Nile perch Tilapia?

Tilapia is a common name for several different mid-size species of omnivorous cichlids. Like the true Nile perch they are from Africa and the Middle East, and were said to be a famed food of the pharaohs.

Is Nile perch invasive?

The Nile perch is an invasive species. This means that the fish is not a natural part of the ecology of Lake Victoria. The lake’s cichlids have no defense against the unfamiliar predator.

Are there piranhas in the Nile river?

Known as the “piranha of Africa,” the giant tigerfish is one of several fish species that makes its home in the Nile.

What does Lates niloticus stand for?

Observations on the biology, age, growth, maturity, and sexuality of Nile perch, (Lates niloticus), and the growth of its fishery in the northern waters of Lake Victoria. In: CIFA, Report of the 3rd Session of the Sub-committee for the Development and Management of the Fisheries of Lake Victoria.

Is Lates niloticus the world’s worst invasion?

L. niloticus has been listed among the 100 “World’s Worst” invaders ( ISSG, 2009 ). Nile perch was originally described as Perca nilotica by Linnaeus (1758). The name was changed into Lates niloticus by Cuvier (in Cuvier & Valenciennes, 1828 ).

How did Lake niloticus spread to other lakes?

Since its deliberate introduction into Lake Victoria and Lake Kyoga, L. niloticus has spread, accidentally or by deliberate introductions, into several lagoons and satellite lakes.

Where does the niloticus live in Africa?

L. niloticus is a large perch-like predator that is native and widespread in parts of Africa, mainly above the equator ( Froese and Pauly, 2009 ). During the 1950s and 1960s L. niloticus was introduced into several East-African lakes ( Pringle, 2005 ).