The curious case of Neotroglocarcinus dawydoffi (Decapoda, Cryptochiridae): unforeseen biogeographic patterns resulting from isolation

Sancia E.T. Van Der Meij, Bastian T. Reijnen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


© 2014 The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London. Coral gall crabs form a commonly overlooked component of the associated fauna of shallow-water reef corals and therefore little is known about their ecology and biogeography. This study investigated the biogeography and phylogenetic position of the informal Detocarcini species group within the Cryptochiridae. We used molecular data for two mitochondrial markers (COI and 16S) obtained from gall crabs covering (part of) a wide geographic range: the Red Sea, Malaysia, Indonesia and New Caledonia. Our phylogeny reconstructions portrayed the Detocarcini as paraphyletic within the monophyletic Cryptochiridae. A phylogeographic clustering was noticed in Neotroglocarcinus dawydoffi that was absent in its sister species, N. hongkongensis, and the closely related species Pseudocryptochirus viridis. A Neighbour Network was estimated for the N. dawydoffi dataset to visualize the similarity between sequences from different biogeographic areas, resulting in three groupings: (1) New Caledonia with Lembeh/Ternate (eastern Indonesia), (2) Semporna/Kudat (eastern Malaysia), and (3) Red Sea (Saudi Arabia). Cryptic speciation rather than isolation is discussed and rejected as an alternative explanation for the observed biogeographic pattern.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)503-512
Number of pages10
JournalSystematics and Biodiversity
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 9 2014
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: Funding for fieldwork in Indonesia was provided by the A.M. Buitendijkfonds, L.B. Holthuisfonds, J.J. ter Pelkwijkfonds (all Naturalis), Stichting Fonds Doctor Catharine van Tussenbroek (Nell Ongeboerfonds), Schure-Beijerinck-Poppingfonds (KNAW) and the Van Tienhoven Foundation for International Nature Protection. SMEE2010 was funded through WWF-Malaysia. TMP2012 was funded by the Malaysian Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation and USAID Coral Triangle Support Partnership. The fieldwork in the Red Sea was sponsored by KAUST. The COI sequences were produced as part of the Naturalis Barcoding project.
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


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