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Phylogenetic Relationships Among American Species of Sesarma (Subgenus Armases) (Brachyura, Grapsidae)

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The phylogeny of Armases, a subgenus of Sesarma, is analysed on the basis of morphological data. Polarity of character states was determined by means of outgroup comparisons. For the reconstruction of the proposed phylogenetic tree, nine out of the eleven known American Armases species were examined. The presence of shared synapomorphies suggests a monophyletic origin of the subgenus with Aratus pisonii, Sesarma (= "Metasesarma") rubripes and the East Atlantic Sesarma elegans. Sesarma benedicti has a basal position in the phylogenetic tree. All other species are subdivided into three groups, called Aratus-, roberti- and cinereum-group. A new comparison with Sesarma haematocheir, species of Chiromantes, confirms that the species examined do not belong to this subgenus of Sesarma and supports the establishment of the new taxon Armases by Abele (1992).

Affiliations: 1: Species Identification and Data Programme, Fisheries, Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Via delle Terme di Caracalla, I-00100 Rome, Italy


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