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Sympatric Three-Species Infection by Sacculina Parasites (Cirripedia: Rhizocephala: Sacculinidae) of an Intertidal Grapsoid Crab

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Abstract Parasitization by sacculinids (Cirripedia: Rhizocephala: Sacculinidae) induces severe modifications in morphology, behavior, and reproduction of their host crabs. To understand the mechanisms involved, it is important to have comprehensive information on their association. However, such information has been poorly available, mainly because of scarcity of distinguishing characters of sacculinids hamper identification of them. In the course of the investigation of the associations using the molecular marker (COI gene) and morphological observation to identify sacculinids, three species of Sacculina, S. confragosa, S. imberbis, and S. yatsui, were found to parasitize a single host crab, Pachygrapsus crassipes, sympatrically in a restricted area. This is the first finding for three-on-one association in a single locality.

Affiliations: 1: a (KT) Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, 1-15-1 Minamidai, Nakano-Ku, Tokyo 164-8639, Japan (corresponding author (KT); ; 2: b (JL) Department of Cell Biology and Comparative Zoology, Institute of Biology, University of Copenhagen, Universitetsparken 15, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark; ; 3: c (MN) Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, 1-15-1 Minamidai, Nakano-Ku, Tokyo 164-8639, Japan


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