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Some Rare Species of Abyssobenthic Shrimp (Families Crangonidae, Glyphocrangonidae and Nematocarcinidae) From the Venezuela Basin, Caribbean Sea (Decapoda, Caridea)

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Deep-sea trawling in the Venezuela Basin of the Caribbean Sea during October through early December 1981 by USNS "Bartlett" collected 4 species in 3 families and genera of abyssobenthic caridean shrimp; namely, Pontophilus talismani Crosnier & Forest, 1973 (Crangonidae), Glyphocrangon atlantica Chace, 1939 (Glyphocrangonidae), Nematocarcinus acanthitelsonis Pequegnat, 1970 and Nematocarcinus ensifer (Smith, 1882) (Nematocarcinidae). Pontophilus talismani is a rare west African species previously known from 2 ovigerous females collected between Dakar and the Cape Verde Islands. Glyphocrangon atlantica was equally rare, heretofore recorded from 3 specimens, 2 from the Caribbean Sea south of Cuba or northeast of Honduras, and a third from the eastern Atlantic off France. Nematocarcinus acanthitelsonis was previously known from 4 specimens, consisting of 2 in the type series from the southwestern Gulf of Mexico, and 2 more from south of the Canary Islands in the eastern Atlantic. Nematocarcinus ensifer, on the other hand, is a common deep-sea shrimp widely distributed on the American Atlantic coast, the Azores, the African and European coasts, and in the eastern and mid-Pacific Ocean from Central America to Hawaii, and perhaps to New Guinea, Japan and the Indian Ocean if synonymization by several authors is correct. All 4 species are considered to be bathyal or abyssal forms, but their widespread distribution, as determined in part from this study, suggests that zoogeographical relationships may be more general for Decapoda inhabiting deep-sea basins than was previously suspected.

Affiliations: 1: 288-2 Winner Circle, The Glades, Naples, Florida 33942, U.S.A.


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