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ABBREVIATED LARVAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE AUSTRALIAN TERRESTRIAL HERMIT CRAB COENOBITA VARIABILISMcCULLOCH (ANOMURA: COENOBITIDAE)

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ABSTRACT The complete larval development of the Australian terrestrial hermit crab Coenobita variabilis McCulloch is described from laboratory-reared specimens. Development consists of two brief, nonfeeding zoeal stages and one megalopal stage. The megalopal stage does feed, but will metamorphose only on land. This is the first case of abbreviated development known in the Coenobitidae. Both zoeal stages exhibit character development typical of all stages of other coenobitids, allowing for easy identification of the species but preventing a clear determination of which stages were eliminated during the evolution of the abbreviated developmental mode. Compared to known megalopae of other coenobitids, the megalopa shows no evidence of advanced development.

Affiliations: 1: Shannon Point Marine Center, 1900 Shannon Point Road, Anacortes, Washington 98221; (present address) California Academy of Sciences, Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Geology, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California 94118.

10.1163/1937240X92X00076
/content/journals/10.1163/1937240x92x00076
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/content/journals/10.1163/1937240x92x00076
2017-11-23

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