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Brazilian Journal of Oceanography

Print version ISSN 1679-8759On-line version ISSN 1982-436X


LEZCANO, Aníbal H.; PENNA, Miguel A.; MARQUEZ, Federico  and  THIEL, Martin. Variation in cheliped form in two species of squat lobsters (Decapoda: Anomura) from Chile. Braz. j. oceanogr. [online]. 2015, vol.63, n.3, pp.303-310. ISSN 1679-8759.

The current study describes the variation in cheliped form of two species of squat lobsters that inhabit the continental margin off Chile: Cervimunida johni and Pleuroncodes monodon. We compared their cheliped form in the context of the reproductive strategy. The general tendency of form variation of both species is similar: chelipeds change, on average, from longer and narrower pollex with short manus to a relatively shorter and wider pollex with longer manus from small to large individuals, respectively. The degree of cheliped arching was greater in males than in females of similar carapace length, and only C. johni males showed fully arched morphology. The allometric trajectories (cheliped shape vs. carapace length) were largely aligned with vectors of mean shape difference in both species. Cheliped form variation of C. johni (extended mate-guarding) resembles the cheliped morphology reported for the related species Munida rugosa more than P. monodon (short mate-guarding). Our results are consistent with previous finding and suggest that the cheliped form variation (from straight and slender to a fully arched morphology) is, or has been, subject to sexual selection through male-male competition for mates.

Keywords : Cervimunida johni; Pleuroncodes monodon; Geometric morphometric; Reproductive strategy.

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