Peter Teske

Peter Teske
University of Johannesburg | uj · Department of Zoology

44.06
 · 
PhD

About

250
Publications
37,534
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2,201
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Introduction
My research focuses on genetic structure in aquatic animals, and how it was shaped both by contemporary and historical environmental conditions. The main focus area is coastal southern Africa, a very exciting region in which to conduct this kind of research because this is where the biodiversity of the Atlantic Ocean mixes with that of the Indian Ocean.
Research Experience
July 2013 - present
University of Johannesburg
Position
  • Associate Professor
January 2001 - March 2003
Stellenbosch University
Position
  • PhD
Education
January 2000 - December 2003
Stellenbosch University
Field of study
  • Population genetics, phylogenetics
January 1999 - February 2000
Nelson Mandela University
Field of study
  • Estuarine ecology

Publications

Publications (250)
Chapter
Full-text available
The role of dominant species is of central importance in ecology. Such species play a key role in ecosystem structure, stability and function, regulating resource allocation across trophic levels and overall ecosystem productivity. Although ecological interactions between dominant and subordinate species are often considered to influence the latter...
Article
Two endemic southern African pipefish species (Teleostei: Syngnathidae) co-occur in estuaries on the southeast coast of South Africa. The larger longsnout pipefish, Syngnathus temminckii, is abundant and has a wide range that comprises coastal and estuarine habitats in all three of the region's marine biogeographic provinces. In contrast, the small...
Article
Full-text available
Southern Africa is a biodiversity hotspot of patellid limpets, with three genera (Helcion, Cymbula and Scutellastra) identified and described in the region. Scutellastra is the most diverse and most frequently studied of these and, along with Cymbula, includes species with territorial and non-territorial foraging behaviours. We used three mitochond...
Article
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The spatial distribution of a species’ genetic diversity can provide insights into underlying evolutionary, ecological and environmental processes, and can contribute information towards the delineation of conservation units. The Knysna seahorse, Hippocampus capensis, is endangered and occurs in only three estuaries on the warm-temperate south coas...
Article
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Simple Summary: Cities are the fastest developing ecosystems on the planet. The rapid expansion of urban areas is typically seen as a threat to global biodiversity, yet the role of cities in protecting species that may be rare in the wild remains poorly explored. Here, we report the use of environmental DNA (eDNA) to document the species present in...
Article
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Knowledge about the demographic histories of natural populations helps to evaluate their conservation status, and potential impacts of natural and anthropogenic pressures. In particular, estimates of effective population size obtained through molecular data can provide useful information to guide management decisions for vulnerable populations. The...
Article
Microbial mats were the dominant habitat type in shallow marine environments between the Palaeoarchean and Phanerozoic. Many of these (termed ‘microbialites’) calcified as they grew but such lithified mats are rare along modern coasts for reasons such as unsuitable water chemistry, destructive metazoan influences and competition with other reef-bui...
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Aim Biogeographical transition zones are areas of overlap between the faunas of adjacent biogeographical entities. Particularly the well‐defined transition zones along linear coastlines are interesting natural laboratories to study dispersal and incipient speciation. Few studies have explored whether marine biogeographical transition zones harbour...
Preprint
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Environmental gradients between marine biogeographical provinces separate distinct faunal communities; in the absence of absolute dispersal barriers numerous species nonetheless occur on either side of such boundaries. While the regional populations of such widespread species tend to be morphologically indistinguishable from each other, genetic evi...
Article
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Background: Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has long been used to date historical demographic events. The idea that it is useful for molecular dating rests on the premise that its evolution is neutral. Even though this idea has long been challenged, the evidence against clock-like evolution of mtDNA is often ignored. Here, we present a particularly clear...
Preprint
Full-text available
Aim Biogeographical transition zones are areas of overlap between the faunas of adjacent biogeographical entities. Particularly, the well-defined transition zones along linear coastlines are interesting natural laboratories to study dispersal and incipient speciation. Few studies have explored whether marine biogeographical transition zones harbour...
Preprint
Full-text available
The recently published complete mitochondrial genome of the endangered Knysna seahorse, Hippocampus capensis Boulenger, 1900, was based on a specimen obtained from a Traditional Chinese Medicine market. As H. capensis is endemic to temperate South Africa and exceptionally rare, illegal trade to supply Asian markets would constitute a considerable e...
Article
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All multicellular organisms host a wide diversity of microorganisms in and on their bodies, which are collectively known as their microbiome. Characterising microbial communities that inhabit different body niches in wild animals is critical to better understand the dynamics of microbiome diversityand its functional significance. The current study...
Preprint
Full-text available
Knowledge about the demographic histories of natural populations helps to evaluate their conservation status, and potential impacts of natural and anthropogenic pressures. In particular, estimates of effective population size obtained through molecular data can provide useful information to guide management decisions for vulnerable populations. The...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has long been used to date historical demographic events. The idea that it is useful for molecular dating rests on the premise that its evolution is neutral. Even though this idea has long been challenged, the evidence against clock-like evolution of mtDNA is often ignored. Here, we present a particularly clear...
Article
Full-text available
The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), introduced from Australia in the mid-nineteenth century, is an invasive species in New Zealand where it is widespread and forms the largest self-sustained reservoir of bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis) among wild populations. Conservation and agricultural authorities regularly apply a ser...
Preprint
Full-text available
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has long been used to date historical demographic events. The idea that it is useful for molecular dating rests on the premise that its evolution is neutral. Even though this idea has long been challenged, the evidence against clock-like evolution of mtDNA is usually ignored. Here, we present a particularly clear and simpl...
Article
Full-text available
Clam shrimps (Spinicaudata) are a widespread and diverse crustacean group that frequent temporary aquatic habitats, but few complete mitochondrial genomes have been published for this group. Here, we report the mitogenome of an undescribed Gondwanalimnadia species from Botswana. Raw sequences were assembled into a single circular genome with a tota...
Preprint
Full-text available
The New Zealand brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), introduced from Australia in the 1850s, is an invasive species that is widespread throughout New Zealand and forms the largest self-sustained reservoir of bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis) in the wild. Conservation and agricultural authorities regularly apply a series of population c...
Article
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Fairy shrimps (Anostraca) constitute an important component of seasonally aquatic habitats, but few complete mitochondrial genomes have been published for this group. Here, we report the mitogenome of a common southern African species, Streptocephalus cafer, from Botswana (accession number: MN720104). Low-coverage shotgun sequencing recovered two c...
Article
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The ‘Abundant-Centre Hypothesis’ is a well-established but controversial hypothesis stating that the abundance of a species is highest at the centre of its range and decreases towards the edges, where conditions are unfavourable. As genetic diversity depends on population size, edge populations are expected to show lower intra-population genetic di...
Article
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Intraspecific genetic structure in widely distributed marine species often mirrors the boundaries between temperature-defined bioregions. This suggests that the same thermal gradients that maintain distinct species assemblages also drive the evolution of new biodiversity. Ecological speciation scenarios are often invoked to explain such patterns, b...
Article
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Intraspecific genetic structure in widely distributed marine species often mirrors the boundaries between temperature-defined bioregions. This suggests that the same thermal gradients that maintain distinct species assemblages also drive the evolution of new biodiversity. Ecological speciation scenarios are often invoked to explain such patterns, b...
Article
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Lovenula raynerae is the largest known African freshwater copepod. To date, it has only been sampled from ephemeral freshwater ecosystems. This paper reports the complete mitochondrial genome of L. raynerae, which was found to be 14,365 bp long. A base composition of 33.5% base A, 19.3% base G, 34.6% base T, and 12.5% base C was found, with 13 prot...
Preprint
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Many marine species do not display genetic structure across the barriers between marine bioregions that in other species with similar life histories define distinct cryptic species. This paradox is often explained by unexpectedly high dispersal potential in the former. Using genomic data from a coastal fish that exists as a single population across...
Article
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The cosmopolitan lamniform shark Carcharias taurus (commonly known as the ragged-tooth, grey nurse or sand tiger shark) is threatened by overexploitation in parts of its range. Return migrations of females to specific nursery areas suggest that females exhibit reproductive philopatry, a behaviour that over time might lead to genetically isolated su...
Article
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Cryptopygus antarcticus travei (Collembola) is a springtail endemic to the sub-Antarctic Prince Edward Islands. The mitogenome of C. a. travei has a length of 15,743 bp and comprises 13 protein-coding genes, 22 tRNAs, and two rRNAs. The base composition is 36% adenine, 33% thymine, 13% guanine, and 18% cytosine. Phylogenetic analyses confirmed the...
Article
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Tullbergia bisetosa is a springtail (Collembola) native to the sub-Antarctic Prince Edward Islands. Unlike most other springtails, it has acquired a euedaphic (living within the soil) life form. In the present study, the complete mitogenome of T. bisetosa was sequenced. It has a length of 15,204 bp and comprises 13 protein-coding genes, 22 tRNAs, a...
Article
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Genomic data can be a useful tool in the management and conservation of biodiversity. Here, we report the development of genomic resources for the spotted ragged-tooth shark Carcharias taurus using genome-wide DNA data from Illumina next-generation sequencing. We explored two commonly used genetic marker types: microsatellites and mitochondrial DNA...
Article
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Isotomurus maculatus (Collembola, Isotomidae) is a springtail with a large distribution. This species has been introduced to the sub-Antarctic Prince Edward Islands. In this study, the mitogenome of I. maculatus was reconstructed. The total length of the mitochondrial genome is 15,263 bp and comprises 13 protein-coding genes, 22 tRNAs, and two rRNA...
Article
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The South African coastline can be divided into at least four temperature-defined marine bioregions, including the tropical north-east coast, the subtropical east coast, the warm-temperate south coast, and the cool-temperate west coast. There are also two biogeographical transition zones, the south-west coast and the south-east coast (or Wild Coast...
Article
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Tests for isolation by distance (IBD) are the most commonly used method of assessing spatial genetic structure. Many studies have exclusively used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences to test for IBD, but this marker is often in conflict with multilocus markers. Here, we report a review of the literature on IBD, with the aims of determining (a) whet...
Article
Full-text available
The South African coastline can be divided into at least four temperature‑defined marine bioregions, including the tropical north‑east coast, the subtropical east coast, the warm‑temperate south coast, and the cool‑temperate west coast. There are also two biogeographical transition zones, the south‑west coast and the south‑east coast (or Wild Coast...
Article
Full-text available
Tests for isolation by distance (IBD) are the most commonly used method of assessing spatial genetic structure. Many studies have exclusively used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences to test for IBD, but this marker is often in conflict with multilocus markers. Here, we report a review of the literature on IBD, with the aims of determining (a) whet...
Article
S. dandelenae sp. nov. is described from the west coast of South Africa and occurs at depths of 80–500 m among unconsolidated sediments. Specimens can reach 40 cm in length and in some areas off South Africa, up to 18 tons/km2 can be collected in a single demersal trawl. Morphologically, the sponge is straw yellow, massive with rounded lobes and ha...
Article
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The application of high-resolution genetic data has revealed that oceanographic connectivity in marine species with planktonic larvae can be surprisingly limited, even in the absence of major barriers to dispersal. Australia's southern coast represents a particularly interesting system for studying planktonic larval dispersal, as the hydrodynamic r...
Article
Fourteen microsatellite loci were developed for the eastern rock sengi, Elephantulus myurus Thomas & Schwann, 1906 by incorporating genetic diversity from across its range in South Africa. Sengis are small mammals belonging to the order Macroscelidea, which comprises 19 species, all of which are endemic to Africa. The loci were amplified in 66 indi...
Article
We provide an overview of the location and ages of coastal phylogeographical breaks in southern Australian planktonic dispersers, and test the hypothesis that the absence of such breaks in some species is an artefact of insufficient resolution of genetic markers when such breaks evolved comparatively recently. Temperate coastal Australia. We genera...
Article
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Distinguishing the relative influence of historic (i.e. natural) versus anthropogenic factors in metapopulation structure is an important but often overlooked step in management programs of threatened species. Biotas in freshwater wetlands and floodplains, such as those in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB)—one of Australia’s most impacted ecosystems,...
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Appendix S3. Relative solvent accessibility (RSA) of secondary ghrelin gene in vertebrate lineages.
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Appendix S5. Composition of GHS‐R secondary structure
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Appendix S1. Ghrelin genes in vertebrates: Accession number, exon/intron structure, and secondary sericulture
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Appendix S2. Secondary structure of ghrelin gene in vertebrate lineages
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Appendix S6. GHS‐R phylogenetic tree including MLN‐R.
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Appendix S4. Secondary structure of GHS‐R isoforms.
Article
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The gut hormone ghrelin is involved in numerous metabolic functions, such as the stimulation of growth hormone secretion, gastric motility, and food intake. Ghrelin is modified by ghrelin O-acyltransferase (GOAT) or membrane-bound O-acyltransferase domain-containing 4 (MBOAT4) enabling action through the growth hormone secretagogue receptors (GHS-R...
Article
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Boundary currents are spectacular oceanographic features whose role as the main drivers of dispersal is often taken for granted. However, numerous genetic studies of passively dispersing coastal species have challenged this idea, and have identified gene flow in the direction opposite to the currents, pointing to a role of nearshore circulation in...
Article
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The Wild Coast in south-eastern South Africa is strongly influenced by the warm, southward-flowing Agulhas Current. This current has a significant impact on dispersal in the coastal biota of the region, and facilitates high levels of connectivity among populations. However, it is not known how the region’s high-velocity hydrology affects genetic po...
Article
Species that disperse by means of planktonic larvae are typically not genetically structured along environmentally homogeneous coastlines. In contrast, those that lack a planktonic dispersal phase, or species with a short (<12 h) pelagic propagule duration (PPD), tend to show population genetic structure at small spatial scales, with dispersal ofte...
Article
Full-text available
Southern Africa is a marine biodiversity hotspot that not only comprises faunal elements from the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, but also large numbers of endemic species. Using mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data, we explored whether genetic structure in the endemic coastal goby Psammogobius knysnaensis, a species whose range straddles both b...
Article
The validity of morphology-based species boundaries between the southern African representatives of the genus Tricolia Risso, 1826 was assessed using mitochondrial COI and 16S rRNA sequence data. Most phylogenies obtained from individual and combined genetic datasets recovered 10 of the southern African members of the genus as a monophyletic clade....
Article
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Broadcast-spawning marine organisms with long pelagic larval duration are often expected to be genetically homogeneous throughout their ranges. When genetic structure is found in such taxa, it may be in the form of chaotic genetic patchiness: i.e. patterns that might seem independent of any underlying environmental variation. The joint analysis of...
Article
Five to seven subspecies of Antarctic Tern (Sterna vittata) are recognised, with at least three (S. v. vittata, S. v. tristanensis and S. v. sanctipauli) wintering in South Africa. Morphological characters used to define these subspecies are not perfectly reliable, but fidelity to nesting site suggests they could be genetically distinct. We used mo...
Data
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Brycon amazonicus is an important freshwater migratory fish in the Amazon Basin. 29 Studies involving populations of B. amazonicus are of great importance for the conservation and 30 management of this species. We developed eight microsatellite loci and applied them to 31 investigate the genetic variation of 32 wild individuals from Catalan lake of...
Article
Unusually low genetic diversity can be a warning of an urgent need to mitigate causative anthropogenic activities. However, current low levels of genetic diversity in a population could also be due to natural historical events, including recent evolutionary divergence, or long-term persistence at a small population size. Here, we determine whether...
Article
Estuaries, at the confluence of marine and freshwater systems, are mostly of geologically recent origin and as such make excellent models for understanding recent speciation events. Using molecular approaches, we compared genetic diversity and demographic histories in 2 closely related southern African klipfish species, the marine Clinus supercilio...
Article
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Global climatic oscillations have shaped the contemporary genetic structure of marine taxa in different ways. Previous demographic studies have indicated that various intertidal marine species display genetic signatures of demographic expansion that either pre- or postdate the Last Glacial Maximum. Such expansions and the ability of species to colo...
Article
Ascidians are considered to have lower dispersal potential than most other sessile marine invertebrates with planktonic propagules by virtue of a very brief propagule duration. The larvae of colonial forms remain in the water column for only a few minutes, whereas most solitary forms settle in less than 24 h. This difference in propagule duration h...
Article
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Genetic methods can be a powerful tool to resolve the native versus introduced status of populations whose taxonomy and biogeography are poorly understood. The genetic study of introduced species is presently dominated by analyses that identify signatures of recent colonization by means of summary statistics. Unfortunately, such approaches cannot b...
Article
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The southern African crab Hymenosoma orbiculare was recently split into five distinct species, of which three are estuarine/coastal and have non-overlapping distributions that are linked to temperature-defined marine bioregions. This suggests that the species’ ranges may be limited by physiological adaptations to their thermal environment. We explo...
Data
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Figure S1. Maximum-likelihood bootstrap trees of (a) COI sequences and (b) ANT intron sequences.
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Data S1. Fasta format, Pyura doppelgangera ANT intron sequences.
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Data S2. Fasta format, Pyura doppelgangera COI gene sequences.
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Data S4. Genepop format, Pyura doppelgangera microsatellites, 10 populations, reduced data set.
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Figure S2. Factorial correspondence analysis (FCA) plots using microsatellite data from 10 populations of Pyura doppelgangera from Tasmania, South Australia, Victoria, and New Zealand.