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A new species of Munidopsis from a seamount of the Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge (Decapoda: Munidopsidae)



Wood and whale bone colonisation experiments were undertaken on the Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge, 18 November 2009. Later, 14 December 2011, squat lobsters were recovered from the submerged wood and assigned to Munidopsis sp. Further study indicated that the specimens belonged to the group of species having a rostrum without lateral spines, presence of two strong epigastric spines, unarmed abdominal segments, one dorsal eye-spine, and with the second pereiopod not reaching the end of the first. They were similar to M. hemingi Alcock & Anderson, 1899 but differed in that the epigastric spines are well developed (vs. tubercles in M. hemingi), the lateral margins of the carapace are straight (vs. more convex in M. hemingi), the eye has a tubercular process mediodorsally (vs. a papilliform spinule at mesial angle) and the epipods on the fourth pereiopod were absent (vs. present in M. hemingi). Consequently the Munidopsis specimens from the Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge were considered to be an undescribed species.


Wood and whale bone, colonisation experiments, Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge, Munidopsis sp. nov.

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