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Arthropoda, Volume 2, Issue 1 (March 2024) – 8 articles

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20 pages, 2794 KiB  
Article
Three New Species of the Freshwater Shrimp Genus Caridina from Australia
by Werner Klotz, Thomas von Rintelen and Kristina von Rintelen
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 99-118; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010008 - 18 Mar 2024
Viewed by 617
Abstract
Three new species of the genus Caridina are described from the northernmost part of Australia. Caridina darwin n. sp. resembles Caridina temasek Choy and Ng, 1991 but differs in the armature of the rostrum, the development of epipods on the pereiopods and the [...] Read more.
Three new species of the genus Caridina are described from the northernmost part of Australia. Caridina darwin n. sp. resembles Caridina temasek Choy and Ng, 1991 but differs in the armature of the rostrum, the development of epipods on the pereiopods and the absence of an appendix interna on the male first pleopods. Caridina magnovis n. sp. resembles Caridina serratirostris de Man, 1892 but differs in the armature of the ventral margin of the rostrum, a shorter stylocerite, a stouter carpus of the first pereiopod, the number and size of spiniform setae on the third and fifth pereiopods, the shape of the preanal carina and the size of the embryos (referred to as “eggs” in most previous publications). Caridina wilsoni n. sp. resembles Caridina gracilirostris de Man, 1892 but differs in the size of the embryos and in some length to width ratios of the segments of the pereiopods. Detailed morphological descriptions of all three new species are given. A molecular phylogeny (mt DNA 16S) supports the morphospecies hypothesis and illustrates the phylogenetic relationship with morphologically similar species from outside Australia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alpha-Level Taxonomy of Decapod Crustaceans)
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14 pages, 1439 KiB  
Article
Evolutionary Conservation and Diversification of Five Pax6 Homologs in the Horseshoe Crab Species Cluster
by Tanay Dakarapu and Markus Friedrich
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 85-98; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010007 - 4 Mar 2024
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Abstract
Horseshoe crabs represent the most ancestral chelicerate lineage characterized by marine ecology and the possession of lateral compound eyes. While considered living fossils, recent studies reported an unusual number of Pax6 genes in the Atlantic horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus. Pax genes encode [...] Read more.
Horseshoe crabs represent the most ancestral chelicerate lineage characterized by marine ecology and the possession of lateral compound eyes. While considered living fossils, recent studies reported an unusual number of Pax6 genes in the Atlantic horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus. Pax genes encode ancient metazoan transcription factors, which comprise seven subfamilies. Among these, the members of the Pax6 subfamily confer critical functions in the development of the head, the visual system, and further body plan components. Arthropods are generally characterized by two Pax6 subfamily homologs that were discovered in Drosophila and named eyeless (ey) and twin of eyeless (toy). However, whole genome sequence searches uncovered three homologs of ey and two homologs of toy in L. polyphemus. These numbers are explained by the occurrence of likely three whole genome duplications in the lineage to the last common ancestor of L. polyphemus and the three additional members of the extant horseshoe crab species cluster. Here, we report that all five L. polyphemus Pax6 paralogs are conserved in the approximately 135-million-year-old horseshoe crab species cluster and that they evolve under strong purifying selection. Largely homogenous protein sequence diversification rates of ey and toy paralogs suggest subfunctionalization as the likeliest preservation trajectory. However, our studies further revealed evidence that the horseshoe crab ey1 and ey2 paralogs share a derived splice isoform that encodes a unique five amino acid-long insertion in helix 3 of the homeodomain. This suggests that the exceptional expansion of the horseshoe crab Pax6 gene family repertoire was also associated with regulatory diversification and possibly innovation. Full article
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9 pages, 7668 KiB  
Article
On the Identity of Neostenotarsus guianensis (Caporiacco, 1954), with a Redescription of the Holotype Male and the First Records from Guyana (Araneae: Theraphosidae)
by Danniella Sherwood and Ray Gabriel
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 76-84; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010006 - 1 Mar 2024
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Abstract
Herein, we redescribe Neostenotarsus guianensis (Caporiacco, 1954) nearly seven decades after its original description. In the original description of Neostenotarsus scissistylus Tesmoingt & Schmidt, 2002, we found characters incongruent with N. guianensis, namely, the purported presence of serration on the prolateral keels [...] Read more.
Herein, we redescribe Neostenotarsus guianensis (Caporiacco, 1954) nearly seven decades after its original description. In the original description of Neostenotarsus scissistylus Tesmoingt & Schmidt, 2002, we found characters incongruent with N. guianensis, namely, the purported presence of serration on the prolateral keels of the palpal bulb; a narrower apical third of the embolus; the absence of a patch of bristles on the retrolateral face of the palpal tibia and of a baso-retrolateral protuberance on metatarsus I; and a shorter and more apically situated megaspine on the retrolateral branch of the tibial apophyses. The characters from its original description are discussed. N. scissistylus stat. rev. has been revalidated until such time as the type material, or topotypic material, can be examined by future workers. Full article
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10 pages, 5153 KiB  
Article
An Indo-West Pacific Distribution for the Coral-Dwelling Gall Crab Lithoscaptus doughnut (Decapoda: Cryptochiridae)
by Jorn R. Claassen, Yosephine Tuti and Sancia E. T. van der Meij
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 66-75; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010005 - 18 Feb 2024
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Abstract
Coral-dwelling gall crabs (Cryptochiridae) are common inhabitants of scleractinian corals. Several species have been described as new in recent years, including Lithoscaptus doughnut, which was described from Hong Kong based on a single female retrieved from the coral Plesiastrea peroni. Here [...] Read more.
Coral-dwelling gall crabs (Cryptochiridae) are common inhabitants of scleractinian corals. Several species have been described as new in recent years, including Lithoscaptus doughnut, which was described from Hong Kong based on a single female retrieved from the coral Plesiastrea peroni. Here we extend the distribution range of L. doughnut with nine additional localities throughout the Indo-West Pacific, from the Red Sea to the Coral Triangle and Japan. We describe a male specimen of L. doughnut for the first time, based on a specimen from Malaysia, and provide photographs of life and preserved material. Haplotype networks based on COI mtDNA (n = 12) and 16 rRNA sequences (n = 12) were created. We retrieved eleven COI haplotypes and six 16S haplotypes, however no clear geographic distribution pattern was discerned. Intraspecific variation in L. doughnut was 1.4% for COI and 0.2% for 16S. Lastly, the first colour photos and records of associated parasites of this species are provided. Full article
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11 pages, 1807 KiB  
Article
How Urban-Tolerant Are They? Testing Prey–Capture Behavior of Introduced Jorō Spiders (Trichonephila clavata) Next to Busy Roads
by Andrew K. Davis, Kade Stewart, Caitlin Phelan and Alexa Schultz
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 55-65; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010004 - 13 Feb 2024
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Abstract
An invasive orb-weaving spider from east Asia is now spreading through the southeastern United States; Trichonephila clavata (the “jorō spider”) makes large, imposing webs seemingly everywhere, including in urban landscapes, and even next to busy roads. However, areas near roads come with frequent [...] Read more.
An invasive orb-weaving spider from east Asia is now spreading through the southeastern United States; Trichonephila clavata (the “jorō spider”) makes large, imposing webs seemingly everywhere, including in urban landscapes, and even next to busy roads. However, areas near roads come with frequent disturbances, including auditory and vibrational, which for many animals, leads to physiological or behavioral changes. Here we tested if varying levels of road traffic affect the prey–capture behavior of jorō spiders in northeast Georgia. We visited roadsides that ranged in traffic density and exposed nearby jorō spiders to a simulated prey (a tuning fork at 128 hz frequency, touched to the web), and recorded whether or not the spider attacked it. Out of 357 total trials across 20 different roads, jorō spiders attacked the simulated prey 59% of the time, but at the local scale, there was high variability in this rate; at some roadsides, over 80% of the spiders attacked, while at others, less than 30% did. When all roads were considered collectively, there was a small but significant (negative) correlation between daily road traffic and spider attack rates. Put another way, spiders near moderate- to heavy-traffic roads were slightly less likely to attack than those near low-traffic roads (51% vs. 65%). Jorō spiders appear to be able to live near roads, but this does come with a cost in terms of prey capture. However, spiders near busier roads did not weigh less than those in other sites, suggesting they may be able to compensate for the disturbance. These findings add to the accumulating evidence around this species that points to its ability to exist in human-dominated landscapes, which will likely aid its spread in the introduced range. Full article
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22 pages, 2001 KiB  
Article
Composition, Distribution, and Biodiversity of Zooplanktons in Tropical Lentic Ecosystems with Different Environmental Conditions
by Wahidah Ahmad Dini Umi, Fatimah M. Yusoff, Zetty Norhana Balia Yusof, Norulhuda Mohamed Ramli, Artem Y. Sinev and Tatsuki Toda
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 33-54; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010003 - 31 Jan 2024
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Abstract
A study was conducted to evaluate zooplankton species composition, abundance, and diversity in both natural and artificial lakes with varying trophic levels and to determine the relationship between zooplankton community structure and lake environmental conditions. This study hypothesized that correlations exist between zooplankton [...] Read more.
A study was conducted to evaluate zooplankton species composition, abundance, and diversity in both natural and artificial lakes with varying trophic levels and to determine the relationship between zooplankton community structure and lake environmental conditions. This study hypothesized that correlations exist between zooplankton community structures and environmental parameters associated with eutrophication in natural and artificial lakes. Sampling was conducted across 16 distinct freshwater lentic ecosystems in Malaysia, including natural lakes/swamps, reservoirs, constructed lakes/ponds, and old mining lakes, spanning a range of trophic levels from mesotrophic to hypereutrophic conditions. Physicochemical parameters were measured in situ, while water and zooplankton samples were collected for nutrient analyses, as well as for zooplankton identification and enumeration. Throughout this study, a total of 58 zooplankton species, consisting of 36 species of rotifers, 12 species of cladocerans, and 10 species of copepods, were recorded. The highest zooplankton density (365.7 ± 13.7 ind L−1) was recorded in constructed lakes/ponds while the lowest density was recorded in natural shallow lakes/swamps (200.5 ± 25.5 ind L−1). On the other hand, significantly higher (p < 0.05) mean species diversity was observed in natural lakes/swamps (H’ = 2.2 ± 0.0); whereas, the lowest diversity was in old mining lakes (H’ = 1.5 ± 0.1). The canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) scores indicated that Polyarthra vulgaris and Chydorus ventricosus were the discriminating species in natural shallow lakes/swamps associated with high water transparency. Meanwhile, the small-sized cladocerans (Ceriodaphnia cornuta) and rotifers (Keratella spp., Brachionus spp., and Trichocerca spp.) were the most discriminating species in lakes with high turbidity, nutrients, and chlorophyll a concentrations, which are the main features of reservoirs and constructed lakes/ponds. Low density and diversity in old mining lakes were due to a low species number and the dominance of two species, Lophocharis curvata (38.8%) and Ptygura libera (39.7%). Overall, the high dominance of a specific zooplankton species resulted in lower biodiversity in artificial ecosystems compared to natural ecosystems. This study elucidated that zooplankton community structure in lakes was significantly influenced by the environmental conditions related to the lake trophic status. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Integrative Taxonomy of Cladocera and Copepoda)
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5 pages, 955 KiB  
Communication
A New Record of the Rare Crab Homolodromia robertsi Garth, 1973 (Crustacea; Decapoda; Homolodromiidae), from Cocos Island, Costa Rica
by Christopher B. Boyko and Peter K. L. Ng
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 28-32; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010002 - 17 Jan 2024
Viewed by 614
Abstract
In the American Museum of Natural History, New York, there is an old specimen labelled as “Holodromia harrisonwilliamsi Boone, MS name” that was collected from Cocos Island in 1925. This name has never been published. An examination of the specimen shows that [...] Read more.
In the American Museum of Natural History, New York, there is an old specimen labelled as “Holodromia harrisonwilliamsi Boone, MS name” that was collected from Cocos Island in 1925. This name has never been published. An examination of the specimen shows that it is a juvenile specimen of Homolodromia robertsi Garth, 1973, a species described from Peru, which has since been reported from Chile and off the coast of Ecuador. This paper reports on the specimen Homolodromia robertsi Garth found in Costa Rica for the first time, a discovery that extends the known range of this species northwards. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alpha-Level Taxonomy of Decapod Crustaceans)
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27 pages, 10272 KiB  
Article
The Dynamics of Soil Mesofauna Communities in a Tropical Urban Coastal Wetland: Responses to Spatiotemporal Fluctuations in Phreatic Level and Salinity
by Gloria Ortiz-Ramírez, Elix Hernández, Solimar Pinto-Pacheco and Elvira Cuevas
Arthropoda 2024, 2(1), 1-27; https://doi.org/10.3390/arthropoda2010001 - 9 Jan 2024
Viewed by 844
Abstract
Coastal wetlands, vital for ecological diversity, have been significantly altered by anthropogenic activities, particularly in the Caribbean. These changes have created a complex mosaic of habitats and physicochemical conditions, further stressed by climate variability and sea-level rise. This study, conducted in Las Cucharillas [...] Read more.
Coastal wetlands, vital for ecological diversity, have been significantly altered by anthropogenic activities, particularly in the Caribbean. These changes have created a complex mosaic of habitats and physicochemical conditions, further stressed by climate variability and sea-level rise. This study, conducted in Las Cucharillas Natural Reserve, a tropical urban coastal wetland in Puerto Rico, aimed to determine the effects of spatiotemporal variations in phreatic levels and salinity on soil mesofauna assemblages, crucial bio-indicators of environmental change. In 2020 and 2021, soil samples were collected from five diverse habitat types during different hydroperiods. Each sample was taken under four randomly selected plant types and processed using lighted Tullgren–Berlese extractors. Phreatic level and salinity were also measured. A total of 43 families were quantified, underscoring distinct habitat differences, similarities, and overall ecosystem diversity. Moderate correlations between phreatic levels, salinity, and mesofauna richness and abundance were determined. Peak richness and abundance were quantified at shallow (−0.03 to −0.07 m) and slightly moderate (−0.12 to −0.17 m) phreatic levels where oligohaline salinity (>0.5 to 5.0 ppt) prevails. The study highlights the adaptability of mesofauna to environmental shifts and their potential as biosensors for effective coastal wetland management amid climatic and anthropogenic pressures. Full article
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