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COLOUR CHANGE AND MIMICRY FROM JUVENILE TO ADULT: XANTHO PORESSA (OLIVI, 1792) (BRACHYURA, XANTHIDAE) AND CARCINUS MAENAS (LINNAEUS, 1758) (BRACHYURA, PORTUNIDAE)

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image of Crustaceana

For two years we have studied carapace colour change, mimicry, and substrate choice during the juvenile stages of two species of crabs, Xantho poressa and Carcinus maenas. Both species live in the Posidonia oceanica meadows until their last moult, after which they abandon the prairies for the nearest rocky substrate (Xantho) or for soft sea bottoms (Carcinus).

Per due anni sono stati studiati la variabilità del cambiamento di colore del carapace, mimetismo e scelta del substrato negli stadi giovanili di due specie di granchi: Xantho poressa e Carcinus maenas. Entrambe le specie vivono nelle praterie di Posidonia oceanica fino all'ultima ecdisi, dopo di che abbandonano le praterie per i più vicini fondali rocciosi (Xantho) o fondali sabbiosi (Carcinus).

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