Unveiling the dynamics of the spider crab Libinia ferreirae, through reproductive and population characteristics on the south-eastern coast of Brazil
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We investigated the population dynamics of the spider crab Libinia ferreirae, focusing on the frequency distribution of individuals in size classes, sex ratio and the action of environmental variables (temperature, salinity, texture and organic matter content in the sediment) on reproduction and recruitment. Monthly collections were made in the Ubatuba region from January 1998 to December 2000. A total of 222 individuals were collected, including 123 juveniles (males and females), 43 adult males, 25 non-ovigerous adult females and 31 ovigerous females. Unlike most adult brachyurans, there was no significant size difference between sexes, and sexual dimorphism seems to be a varying characteristic for this crab genus. The reproductive period and recruitment were continuous with peaks that could be related to water mass dynamics and higher food availability in the Ubatuba region. In addition, our results increase knowledge about part of the life cycle of L. ferreirae, which could be useful for comparative studies.
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