Zoological Studies

Vol. 57, 2018

(update: 2018.03.21; 04.10) 

Helice epicure, A New Species of Varunid Mud Crab (Brachyura, Decapoda, Grapsoidea) from the Ryukyus, Japan

Ngan Kee Ng1, Tohru Naruse2, and Hsi-Te Shih3,*

1Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore, 14, Science Drive 4, Singapore 117543. E-mail: dbsngnk@nus.edu.sg
2Tropical Biosphere Research Center, Iriomote Station, University of the Ryukyus, 870 Uehara, Taketomi, Okinawa 907-1541, Japan
3Department of Life Science and Research Center for Global Change Biology, National Chung Hsing University, 250, Kuo Kuang Road, Taichung 402, Taiwan

(Received 9 February 2018; Accepted 11 March 2018; Communicated by Benny K.K. Chan)

Ngan Kee Ng, Tohru Naruse, and Hsi-Te Shih (2018) Helice epicure, a new species of varunid crab, is described from the Ryukyu Islands, Japan. The new species in the genus Helice De Haan, 1833 can be distinguished from its congeners by morphological differences in the chelae and suborbital crenulation. The morphological differences between the new species and a sister clade (the H. latimera complex, including H. latimera Parisi, 1918, H. tientsinensis Rathbun, 1931 and H. formosensis Rathbun, 1931) are supported by mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) divergences. However, the phylogenetic relationship within the H. latimera complex is unresolved for the time being.

Key words: Helice epicure, H. formosensis, New species, Varunid, Mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I.

*Correspondence: Tel/Fax: 886-4-22856496. E-mail: htshih@dragon.nchu.edu.tw