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HERMIT CRAB FAUNA FROM SEA GRASS MEADOWS IN PUERTO RICO: SPECIES COMPOSITION, DIEL AND SEASONAL VARIATION IN ABUNDANCE

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ABSTRACT Sea grass meadows sampled monthly for one year by push net had a hermit crab fauna composed of four pagurid and four diogenid species. Three species dominated the paguroid samples: Pagurus criniticornis (34.2%), Clibanarius antillensis (30.3%), and Cl. tricolor (18.5%). Abundances in night samples were consistently higher than in day collections. Field observations indicate that hermit crabs on sea grass meadows congregate into clusters during the day and disperse over the meadow at night, thus accounting for increased abundances in night collections. Hermit crab species showed two seasonal peaks of abundance at this tropical location, the first in the spring or summer and the second in the winter.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Biology, University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico 00931.

10.1163/1937240X85X00245
/content/journals/10.1163/1937240x85x00245
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/content/journals/10.1163/1937240x85x00245
2017-10-22

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