Description of a new species of Pachycheles (Decapoda, Anomura, Porcellanidae) from the southern Caribbean Sea

in Crustaceana
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A new species of porcellanid crab from the southern Caribbean Sea is described. Pachycheles tuerkayi n. sp. has been confused with P. serratus (Benedict, 1901) since the 1950s because the two species are morphologically and ecologically similar and have overlapping distributions in the southern Caribbean. P. tuerkayi n. sp. is restricted to the coasts of Costa Rica, Panamá and Colombia. P. serratus ranges from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to the coasts of Panamá, Colombia and Venezuela. Genetic differences based on DNA sequences of the mitochondrial 16S rDNA gene from the two species surpassed those estimated for geminate porcellanids on each side of the Isthmus of Panamá. Field observations where P. tuerkayi n. sp. and P. serratus overlap indicated that the two species come into contact when sharing the same substrate. The total number of porcellanid species in the western Atlantic rises to 50.

Description of a new species of Pachycheles (Decapoda, Anomura, Porcellanidae) from the southern Caribbean Sea

in Crustaceana



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  • View in gallery

    a, Pachycheles tuerkayi n. sp. from Santa Marta, Colombia, large male, INV CRU 8409; scale = 4.5 mm. b, P. serratus (Benedict, 1901) from the Gulf of Morrosquillo, Colombia, large male. Scale = 4.5 mm.

  • View in gallery

    Pachycheles tuerkayi n. sp., male holotype, INV CRU8408, dorsal view. Scale = 5.4 mm.

  • View in gallery

    Pachycheles tuerkayi n. sp., male holotype, INV CRU8408. a, carapace, frontal view; b, carapace, lateral view. Scale = 2.8 mm.

  • View in gallery

    Pachycheles serratus (Benedict, 1901), male, SMF 50196, chelipeds, dorsal view. Scale = 4.5 mm.


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