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image of Journal of Crustacean Biology

ABSTRACT Male Uca rosea copulate on the surface of the ground. The vertical type of waving is typical for this species. The claw was raised, stopped at the highest position, and lowered. Jerks were present for the upstroke and the downstroke. The display, however, is nonrequisite before surface mating. In this study, we found that some male U. rosea attracted females into their burrows for underground mating by waving. When a male U. rosea approached close enough to a wandering female, he waved toward her and walked back to his burrow. The male did not enter the burrow, but continued waving while passing his burrow, and, if she entered it, he then followed suit. When a male executed vertical waving toward a female, this behavior led the female closer to his burrow. Male leading of the female was present, but took different forms from that in the subgenus Celuca. The initiation of wandering of most females was associated with their eviction by wandering males. Wandering did not occur spontaneously, because most wandering females had stored sperm supplied from surface matings in their spermathecae. Female U. rosea sometimes descended into burrows during wandering. Pairing underground with a wandering female also occurred sporadically without her responding to waving. They occupied an empty burrow in which they formed pairs. If wandering females did not enter empty burrows, they entered male burrows, where no waving occurred. They need no sperm, but enter burrows probably for replenishing water. The male elicits copulation from the female in exchange for access to his burrow or a near empty burrow. Many pairs did not involve waving. The ovulation rate by female mates was similar between waving and nonwaving males.


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