Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências
Print version ISSN 0001-3765
SAMPAIO, Sara R. and MASUNARI, Setuko. Characterization of the occupied shells by the hermit crab Clibanarius vittatus (Decapoda, Diogenidae) at Baixio Mirim tideflat, Guaratuba Bay, southern Brazil. An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc. [online]. 2010, vol.82, n.4, pp. 833-842. ISSN 0001-3765. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0001-37652010000400005.
A characterization of the occupied shells by the hermit crab Clibanarius vittatus was carried out. Hermit crabs were collected in the intertidal zone, during the low spring tide monthly from April 2005 to March 2006. They were sexed and their cephalothoracic shield length (CL) was measured. Shells were identified, dried, weighed and the aperture length (AL) and width (AW) were measured. 1187 crabs were collected (949 males, 216 females and 22 intersexes), which occupied 12 species of gastropod shells. Stramonita haemastoma, Olivancillaria urceus and Dorsanum moniliferum made up 96.55% of the total shell species. Male hermit crabs attained significantly larger sizes than females; therefore, males occupied a wider spectrum of shells in size and weight. A stronger correlation ratio was obtained between CL and AW of S. haemastoma. Last whorl with a rounded shape and a spacious inner area is a common feature of all shell species most frequently occupied by this hermit crab where it occurs. The successful establishment of C. vittatus at Baixio Mirim is mainly due to the appropriately shaped and wide range of size of S. haemastoma shells that were most often occupied by the hermit crabs of the studied population.
Keywords : Guaratuba Bay; shell availability; shell occupation; shell size and shape.