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Revista mexicana de biodiversidad

On-line version ISSN 2007-8706Print version ISSN 1870-3453


DOMINGUEZ-DOMINGUEZ, Omar  and  PEREZ-PONCE DE LEON, Gerardo. Is the Mesa Central of Mexico a biogeographical province? Descriptive analysis based on freshwater biotic components. Rev. Mex. Biodiv. [online]. 2009, vol.80, n.3, pp.835-852. ISSN 2007-8706.

This essay presents an analysis of the concept of Mesa Central of México as a potential biogeographical province. This region of México has been used as a reference for describing species richness and distribution patterns of the freshwater fish fauna. However, it has not been recognized as a biogeographical province in the available schemes which are mostly based on the composition of terrestrial biota. Here, we provide a historical sketch of the way the concept of Mesa Central arose in the literature as a physiographic province, and we provide a comparison with respect to the regionalization schemes of the Mexican territory, which are based on attributes such physiography, elevation, hydrology, geology and biogeography. We conclude that the Mesa Central, even though it represents a practical concept for establishing the distribution pattern of the fish fauna, in the way it was described originally cannot be circumscribed to any of the regions or provinces in which Mexico has been divided. We also argue that this geographical region cannot be considered as a synonym of the Transmexican Volcanic Axis biogeographical province, and also that it is possible that the fact that this area is not circumscribed to any regionalization scheme is due to the fact that freshwater elements have not been considered in the establishment of such biogeographical regions. We end by pointing out the need for a biogeographical analysis that integrates most of the freshwater elements in order to determine whether both the aquatic and terrestrial flora and fauna are driven by the same geobiotic processes.

Keywords : Mesa Central; Freshwater Fishes; Biogeography; Mexico; Goodeidae.

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