The Behavior of Some Deep-Water Hermit Crabs (Decapoda: Paguridea) from the Straits of Florida
Abstract:The behavior of specimens of eleven species of hermit crabs, collected from depths of 110 to 713 meters, was observed in the laboratory (Diogenidae: Clibanarius anomalus, Paguristes spinipes, Paguristes moorei, Paguristes “A”, and Dardanus insignis; Paguridae: Benthopagurus cokeri [new combination], Pagurus rotundimanus, Pagurus politus, Pylopagurus discoidalis, Parapagurus pictus, and Spiropagurus iris). The aggressive displays executed as individuals approached one another are described for each species. These movements of the chelipeds and ambulatory legs are similar to those of congeneric species from shallow water. Pagurid hermits exhibited extreme avoidance of conspecific individuals during diurnal observation periods. Specimens of Pagurus politus showed a peculiar “appeasement” behavior whereby individuals could come closer than usual to one another. The behavior patterns associated with shell fighting are described for four species (Clibanarius anomalus, Paguristes moorei, Dardanus insignis and Pylopagurus discoidalis). Several adaptations of the behavior of Pylopagurus discoidalis affected by inhabiting scaphapod shells are described.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 1966-03-01
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