Call for Papers

In addition to symposia, we would like to have many presentations in oral and poster sessions.  Please keep in mind that presenters are usually supposed to give a single presentation, although those who attending two symposia may give two presentations.
As in the previous IPFCs, the main themes of the Okinawa Conference include systematics, evolution, zoogeography and phylogeography, biodiversity, ecology, behavior, and conservation. The Organizing Committee is preparing an interesting program including many symposia on a range of topics such as systematics, evolution, phylogeny, ecology, behavior, and conservation. Colleagues who would like to organize symposia are kindly requested to contact the organizing committee of the IPFC9 by the end of July 2012.


Proposed Symposia


Top predatory fish in the Indo-Pacific ecosystems

Alexei Orlov

Russian Federal Research Institute of Fisheries & Oceanography, Moscow, Russia (email:

Top predatory fishes of Indo-Pacific region are represented by the variety of different species, including sharks, large skates and rays, barracudas, lancetfish, daggertooth, tunas and billfishes, halibuts, sablefish, cod, toothfishes, etc. However, diet compositions and forage resources consumed by these large predators are studied insufficiently, level of feeding competition between them is largely unknown, and the role of top predators in the ecosystems is poorly understood. Meanwhile, many of top predators are important targets (e.g. tunas, billfishes, halibuts, cod, sablefish, toothfishes) of trawl, longline, net, pot, trap, and troll fisheries. These fisheries may impact ecosystem structure, e.g. if large top predators are overfished, abundance of forage fishes may increase or one predatory fish might be replaced by another. The knowledge of feeding habits and trophic relations of large top predatory fishes might help to understand fluctuations of their abundance and to make exploitation of their resources sustainable.

Symposium themes:

1. Diet composition of top predatory fish in different areas of Indo-Pacific region;

2. Forage resources consumed by top predatory fish in the Indo-Pacific;

3. Trophic relations and feeding competition between large top predators;

4. Fisheries impact to ecosystem structure through the harvest of both large top predators and/or their forage resources.

These are main topics within the theme of symposium but papers related to other relevant topics within symposium overall theme are encouraged.


Fish diversity across environmental extremes

C. J. Fulton (

ARC Centre of Excellence of Coral Reef Studies, Research School of Biology, The Australian National University, Canberra ACT 0200 AUSTRALIA

B. C. Ebner (

Tropical Landscapes Joint Venture, CSIRO Ecosystem Services & TROPWater, James Cook University, Atherton QLD 4883 AUSTRALIA

Understanding how fish vary their phenotypes across environmental gradients, particularly under extreme physiochemical conditions, can provide powerful insights into their potential response to climate change. Through an extreme expression of a given trait, or the possession of an entirely novel attribute, fishes are often able to exploit habitats where they are subject to extreme and often highly variable environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, depth, flow, pH, light). In this symposium we will explore how such extremes in fish biodiversity can be uncovered by mapping fish communities across environmental gradients, using experiments to reveal phenotype-environment interactions, applying physiological tests to measure environmental tolerances, as well as conceptual models that link many of these aspects together to explain and predict the consequences of climatic change. We will also explore the suite of methods (e.g. underwater visual censuses, remote video, biologging, telemetry, remote autonomous vehicles) that allow us to sample and observe fishes under extreme conditions, and in so doing, ask the question: how much fish diversity are we yet to uncover within extreme environments?


Ecological effects of habitat degradation on fish communities and processes

Dr Andrew Hoey, Prof Morgan Pratchett and Dr Shaun Wilson

ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University

Townsville  QLD 4811 AUSTRALIA

Habitat structure is a fundamental property of all ecological systems. The physical structure of a habitat interacts with ecological processes in a variety of ways, and may have significant effects on the composition, structure and function of fish communities. Understanding the potential effects of habitat structure on ecosystem processes (e.g., recruitment, predation, competition, herbivory) is becoming increasingly important as climate change and anthropogenic stressors are fundamentally changing the physical and ecological structure of aquatic ecosystems worldwide. Indeed, climate change has already had significant and spectacular impacts on the structure and functioning of many of the worldfs marine and freshwater ecosystems.

The effects of climate change are most pronounced in coastal marine ecosystems. This susceptibility is directly related to the properties of aqueous environments, and the marked effect of changing environmental conditions (namely water temperature, hydrodynamics, sedimentation, and the supply and availability of nutrients) on key biological and ecological processes. For example, coral reefs have experienced unprecedented declines in the cover of live coral and reductions in topographic complexity over the past three decades, with concomitant increases in other benthic taxa, and altered sedimentation. Similarly, many freshwater and temperate marine ecosystems have undergone dramatic shifts in habitat structure over the past few decades. This symposium invites presentations that examine the effects of habitat degradation on the structure and function of fish communities in all aquatic ecosystems.


Phylogeography: from genes to genomes

Luiz A. Rocha ( )

Michelle R. Gaither (

California Academy of Science, 55 Music Concourse Drive, San Francisco, CA 94118

Format: At IPFC 2009 a full day of talks was dedicated to phylogeography.  We believe this year interest will be even greater due to the addition of the topic of genomics.  For this symposium we would like to allocate 2-4 30min time slots to invited speakers with the remainder of the time reserved for 15 min presentations.

The list of invited speakers who have already agreed to attend without funding includes:

Michael Alfaro, University of California Los Angeles

Brian Bowen, University of Hawaii

Giacomo Bernardi, University of California Santa Cruz

David Bellwood, James Cook University

Description of symposium:

Phylogeography describes the study of the geographic distribution of genealogical lineages over time. Since 1987, when John Avise coined, the study of phylogeography has burgeoned and provided important insight into the origin of biodiversity in the Indo-Pacfic, the processes that promote hotspots, and the role of biogeogrpahic barriers in the sea.  Phylogeographic data have proved useful for a variety of disciplines including fisheries management, the study of speciation, and on predictions of the impact of climate change on biodiversity.  In a comparative framework phylogeography can reveal how ecological and evolutionary processes have lead to community assembly.  With the advent of next-generation sequencing technologies it is now possible to economically conduct studies using 10s to 1000s of genes for stronger inference. This symposium will focus on a wide range of topics under the headings of phylogeography, comparative phylogeography, biogeography, genomics, and diversification.


Biogeography and Systematics of Chondrichthyan Fishes

William WHITE, CSIRO, Hobart, Australia (

David EBERT, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, USA (

Bernard SERET, IRD/MNHN, Paris, France (

Peter LAST, CSIRO Hobart, Australia (

Marcelo de CARVALHO, Universidade de S?o Paulo, Brazil (

The last decades showed a growing interest for chondrichthyan fishes (sharks, rays and chimaeras) resulting in the publication of an increasing number of papers and the development of numerous studies on theses fishes. One outstanding result of this keen interest concerns the diversity of this group of fishes as almost 20 % of the extant species have been described in the last two decades. Many of these new taxa were found in the largely unknown world of the deep-seas, but also in the ‘Golden triangle’ of the Indo-Pacific region. In the same period, the huge development of the molecular and genetics methods, associated with classical morphological studies, significantly contributed to the description of the diversity and brought new insights into the phylogenetic relationships of this group of fishes.

The symposium is aimed to evaluate what has been done up to now in these fields of research and what should be done in the forthcoming years to better understand how the chondrichthyan fishes evolved and became distribute in the world’s oceans.

All the ‘cartilaginous heads’ are warmly invited to contact the organizers to propose their communications (oral or poster) and any ideas that could contribute to make this symposium fruitful.

Hope to see you in Okinawa.


The role of oceanic islands in the evolution of fishes

Iria Fernandez Silva, University of Hawaii, USA:

Oceanic islands are major players in the history of diversification of Indo-Pacific fishes. They differ on their degree of isolation, size and age; and also on whether they are grouped in archipelagos or the intensity of the changes experienced by their surrounding habitats in recent geological times. Islands and archipelagos offer unique natural experiments to test evolutionary models, study connectivity and dispersal of fishes, and for the use of comparative phylogeography to examine codiversification of associated taxa. As the histories of more fishes become known it is likely that isolated archipelagos will be revealed to have a prominent role in the biogeography and evolution of fish groups now found throughout the Indo-Pacific and beyond.

This symposium will cover the interface between Indo-Pacific biogeographic research and the fields of evolution, ecology, and conservation biology, and will highlight the contribution of research on oceanic islands, with a regional focus on Japan and Hawaii, to these topics.

Questions that will be addressed include:

  • What within-lineage connectivity patterns are found among islands within archipelagos and across archipelagos in the Indo-Pacific? What is the relative contribution of biotic and abiotic factors?
  • Are there common patterns of evolutionary diversification among lineages across the disparate island systems of the Pacific?
  • How does knowledge of the evolution of Pacific Island fishes contribute to the conservation of island ecosystems?
  • What is the role of oceanic islands in the generation of Indo-Pacific tropical fish diversity?


Behavioral ecology of marine fish larvae: oceanic dispersion, habitat selection, and recruitment

Dr. David LECCHINI: CRIOBE, USR3278 CNRS-EPHE, LabEx “CORAIL”, 98729 Moorea, French Polynesia (email:

Dr. Yohei NAKAMURA: Graduate School of Kuroshio Science, Kochi University, Japan (email:

Dr. Reiji MASUDA: Maizuru Fisheries Research Station, Kyoto University, Japan (email:

Habitat selection is an almost universal activity among animals, and affects nearly all of an individual’s subsequent choices. While there is a plethora of information about breeding and foraging habitat selection, data on habitat selection for marine species at recruitment are relatively scarce. Yet, the replenishment and persistence of most marine species in coral reefs or in temperate ecosystems (i.e., molluscs, fish and crustaceans) are contingent upon dispersing larvae finding and becoming established in a recruitment habitat. Thus, one of the great mysteries of marine ecology is how oceanic fish larvae locate the relatively rare patches of coral reef or temperate habitat on which they recruit. Fish larvae experience a major challenge when facing recruitment in a multi-threat environment, within which, using recruitment cues, they need to select a suitable habitat. Despite of some recent studies on sensory cues and swimming abilities used by fish larvae to select a habitat, the ecological and behavioural mechanisms by which larvae disperse and return from their oceanic phase to appropriate recruitment habitat remains relatively unknown. Yet, how fish larvae colonize suitable adult habitats is critical to understanding their evolution, population biology, and community dynamics.

Suggested speakers and topics (already confirmed)

Jeffrey Leis, Australian Museum, Australia ( Sensory abilities and orientation of reef-fish larvae

Michael Kingsford, James Cook University, Australia ( Sources and sinks of larvae among reefs of the Great Barrier Reef

Craig Radford, The University of Auckland, New Zealand ( Can larval snapper, Chrysophrys auratus, smell their new home?

David Lecchini, CRIOBE, French Polynesia ( Preference of fish larvae for coral above algal water cues: Potential implications in the context of coral reef degradation

Yohei Nakamura, Kochi University, Japan ( Recruitment of tropical fishes in expanding coral habitats on temperate coasts of Japan

René Galzin, CRIOBE, French Polynesia ( Extreme climatic events reduce fish larval supply in tropical, reef ecosystems”. Is it still possible to change it ?

Suggested speakers and topics (to be confirmed)

Stephen Simpson, Bristol University, UK ( Impacts of global environmental change on auditory behaviour and survival of larvae


Ontogeny and Systematics of Indo-Pacific fishes

Kiyoaki Kanashiro, Okinawa Prefectual Fisheries Institute.

Izumi Kinoshita, Usa Institute of Marine Biology, Kochi University.

Jeffrey Leis, Australian Museum and Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania.

Knowledge of the ontogeny of fishes can be a powerful tool in constructing and testing phylogenies.  Yet, this approach is underutilized.  This symposium will emphasize the value of ontogeny in fish systematics.

Peter Konstantinidis (and Dave Johnson?): Ontogeny of Gigantura.

Tom Trnski: Larval development of Polyprion oxygeneios, and implications of ontogeny for relationships

Jeff Leis: Is Kuhlia a Terapontid?

Ralf Britz: To be arranged

Dave Johnson: To be arranged

Nalani Schnell: To be arranged

Izumi Kinoshita: To be arranged


Phylogenetics and Diversification of Percomorpha

Masaki Miya (Natural History Museum & Institute, Chiba; e-mail:

Thomas J. Near (Yale University; e-mail:

Percomorpha contains approximately 17,100 species, which is more than 25% of all living vertebrates. The phylogenetic relationships among the major lineages of this incredibly species-rich clade of teleost fishes is largely unresolved, prompting Gareth Nelson to refer to the percomorphs as the the “bush at the top of the [teleost] tree.” Over the past three decades percomorph phylogeny has been inferred in comparative anatomical studies and phylogenetic analyses of molecular data, primarily partial mtDNA sequences. Despite these efforts, the different perspectives on percomorph phylogenetics is contentious, and relationships among the most inclusive percomorph clades are generally unresolved.

Comprehensive taxon sampling including several hundred species and large samples of mitogenomes and nuclear genes are offering exciting insights into the phylogenetic relationships of Percomorpha. Incorporation of the fossil record into these emerging molecular phylogenetic perspectives provide means to estimate the timing of percomorph diversification. These time calibrated phylogenies offer an unprecedented opportunity to examine patterns of lineage diversification in one of the most species-rich clades among living vertebrates.

This symposium invites 10 speakers who have made significant contributions to recent remarkable progress in our understanding of the phylogenetics and diversification of Percomorpha. We will attempt to synthesize those contributed papers and to provide a comprehensive perspective of percomorph phylogeny and patterns of diversification in the clade. We also provide a unranked percomorph classification of Percomorpha that reflects the inferred phylogenetic relationships.

This symposium is open to invited speakers only.

Speakers (alphabetical order; all confirmed):

Alfaro, Michael L. (University of California, Los Angeles)

Bellwood, David R. (James Cook University)

Dornburg, Alex (Yale University)

Friedman, Matt (Oxford University)

Lecointre, Guillaume (Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle)

Miya, Masaki (Natural History Museum & Institute, Chiba)

Moore, Jon A. (Florida Atlantic University)

Near, Thomas J. (Yale University)

Ortí, Guillermo (George Washington University)

Wainright, Peter, C. (University of California, Davis)