The cyprinid fish fauna of North America is relatively large, with approximately 300 species, and all but one of these are considered phoxinins. The phylogenetic relationships of the North American phoxinins continue to pose difficulties for systematists. Results of morphological analyses are not consistent owing to differences interpreting and coding characters. Herein, we present phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial 12S and 16S ribosomal RNA sequence data for representatives of nearly all genera of North American phoxinins. The data were analysed using parsimony, weighted parsimony, maximum likelihood and bayesian analyses. Results from weighted parsimony, likelihood and the bayesian analysis are largely consistent as they all account for differing substitution rates between transitions and transversions. Several major clades within the fauna can be recognized and are strongly supported by all analyses. These include the western clade, creek chub-plagopterin clade and the open posterior myodome clade. The shiner clade is nested in the open posterior myodome clade and is the most species-rich clade of North American phoxinins. Relationships within this clade were not well resolved by our analyses. This may reflect the inability of the mitochondrial RNA genes to resolve recent speciation events or taxon sampling within the shiner clade.
- Bayesian estimation
- Maximum likelihood