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Free Content Distribution and Biology of Indo-Pacific Insular Hypogeal Shrimps

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Ten species of caridean shrimps, representing nine genera in five families, have been found in exposures of the marine water table at 28 islands from Hawaii to the western Indian Ocean. Synthesis of literature information and personal observations indicate that, as a group, these shrimps are characterized by red body pigment, reduced but pigmented eyes, euryhalinity, a proclivity for interstitial seawater in limestone or lava rock, generalized food requirements, and probable pre-Pleistocene origins. The shrimps have not been found in waters cooler than about 20°C.

Species are often solitary, but as many as five are known to coexist. Six of the species have widely scattered populations, some as far apart as Hawaii and the Red Sea. Passive oceanic dispersal is endorsed as a general explanation for such apparently disjunct distributions. On the basis of an assumed primary habitat requirement of interstitial marine water, which could include that in shallow submerged rock as well as that in emergent (insular) rock, I hypothesize a much more cosmopolitan distribution of these shrimps in the Indo-Pacific Tropical Zone.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1983-07-01

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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