Sunday, August 23, 2015

[Crustacea • 2015] Arcithelphusa cochleariformis • Description of A New Genus and New Species of Freshwater Crab (Brachyura: Gecarcinucidae) from the Western Ghats, Kerala, India


Arcithelphusa cochleariformis
Pati & Sudha Devi, 2015

Abstract
Background
Freshwater crabs of the Western Ghats have been severely underestimated in their diversity. Since freshwater crabs have a small spatial scale endemism, many remote and poorly studied localities in the Western Ghats need to be surveyed. In this study, a new genus and new species is described.

Results
Arcithelphusa cochleariformis gen. et sp. nov. is described from Ondayangadi, Wayanad district, Kerala, India. The new genus and new species is exceptional among Indian freshwater crabs due to its squarish, highly arched carapace, appearing box-like in frontal view, and long, stout, spoon-shaped male first gonopod.

Conclusions
With the current discovery, 14 genera and 36 species of gecarcinucid freshwater crabs are recognized in the Western Ghats of India. More new taxa can be expected from this exceptionally biodiversity-rich area if the necessary surveys are done.


Figure 4: Habitat of Arcithelphusa cochleariformis sp. nov. at type locality, Ondayangadi.
(A) Betel nut plantations; (B) burrows along water channels (yellow arrow head marks); (C) live crab near a burrow

Sameer Kumar Pati and Arath Raghavan Sudha Devi. 2015. Description of A New Genus and New Species of Freshwater Crab (Brachyura: Gecarcinucidae) from the Western Ghats, Kerala, India.  Zoological Studies. April 2015, 54:35. DOI: 10.1186/s40555-015-0112-0

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