Decapoda Research Paper

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INTRODUCTION
Parental care in Decapoda is usually limited to the female's care for her eggs
(i.e., carrying, oxygenating, cleaning, protecting, and sometimes assisting in hatching)
(Hazlett, 1983). Care of recently hatched juveniles is rare in invertebrates, and evolved mainly in terrestrial and freshwater species (Thiel, 2000). The freshwater crayfishes show some of the most complex patterns of parental care among decapods
(Hazlett, 1983). The majority of studies with these animals refer to Northern
Hemisphere species (Astacidae and Cambaridae). A large part of these describe the embryonic development and the specialized structures that the juveniles use to attach to the female (Payne, 1972; Köksal, 1988), and few studies have evaluated the mother-offspring relationship (Mason, 1970; Aquiloni & Gherardi, 2008) or
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Northern Hemisphere crayfishes differ from those found in the Southern Hemisphere
(Parastacidae) in some aspects, such as the specialized structures of the juveniles that are used to cling to the female's pleopods during the first and second instars (i.e., before the juveniles can move independently) (Levi et al., 1999).
In Astacoidea, the juvenile attaches to the mother by curved hooks on the dactyl and propodus of the first pereopod (Price & Payne, 1984; Scholtz & Kawai, 2002).
Members of the Parastacoidea use curved spines on the dactyls of the fourth and fifrh pereopods, which disappear when the juveniles become independent (Felder et al., 1985; Sandeman & Sandeman, 1991; Hamr, 1992; Scholtz & Kawai, 2002;
Rudolph & Rojas, 2003).
Another difference is the diversity of life habits in these superfamilies. The
Southern Hemisphere group has a larger proportion of species with burrowing habits than the Northern Hemisphere crayfish (Richardson & Swain, 1980).

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