Presentation Title

Diversity of Bioluminescent Signaling Ostracod Crustaceans in Puerto Rico coral reef habitats.

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Location

HUB 302-#37

Type of Presentation

Poster

Abstract

The ostracod family Cypridinidae contains approximately 100 bioluminescent species, of which males of about 80 Caribbean species produce species-specific luminescent mating displays. Ten putative species were collected during nightly displays on coral reefs in Puerto Rico. Each either had a unique display, or had a similar display but in a different habitat. One grassbed species was collected in baited traps. To estimate how many species were collected, we analyzed behavior, habitat, morphology, and 16S rRNA mitochondrial sequences. Behaviors were described by direction, intensity of pulses, and length of display. Habitat was categorized as sand, coral, or grassbed and deep or shallow. The length, height, length:height ratio of valves, eye size, and keel length were compared for males of nine of the putative species. DNA sequences were analyzed for just seven of the eleven types. Two Kornickeria types did not overlap in any characters, and are potentially two new species. The Photeros grassbed type is morphologically distinct from the others; its behavior is unknown. The species status of the eight types assigned to the H Group genus is unresolved. Two H Group types that differed only in the direction of display (up or down) are the same morphologically based on the characters we examined, and differ only by a single nucleotide. From this preliminary analysis, we conclude that there are at least four species of signaling ostracods in the sample set but possibly as many as nine. Once data are analyzed for all eleven, they will be compared to known species from other Caribbean locations to determine if they are new. Diversity and endemism are high in Caribbean cypridinids; we expect that these species are new to science. The Puerto Rico collections will be used in a large phylogenomic project to study the evolution of cypridinid bioluminescence and complex behavioral displays.

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Diversity of Bioluminescent Signaling Ostracod Crustaceans in Puerto Rico coral reef habitats.

HUB 302-#37

The ostracod family Cypridinidae contains approximately 100 bioluminescent species, of which males of about 80 Caribbean species produce species-specific luminescent mating displays. Ten putative species were collected during nightly displays on coral reefs in Puerto Rico. Each either had a unique display, or had a similar display but in a different habitat. One grassbed species was collected in baited traps. To estimate how many species were collected, we analyzed behavior, habitat, morphology, and 16S rRNA mitochondrial sequences. Behaviors were described by direction, intensity of pulses, and length of display. Habitat was categorized as sand, coral, or grassbed and deep or shallow. The length, height, length:height ratio of valves, eye size, and keel length were compared for males of nine of the putative species. DNA sequences were analyzed for just seven of the eleven types. Two Kornickeria types did not overlap in any characters, and are potentially two new species. The Photeros grassbed type is morphologically distinct from the others; its behavior is unknown. The species status of the eight types assigned to the H Group genus is unresolved. Two H Group types that differed only in the direction of display (up or down) are the same morphologically based on the characters we examined, and differ only by a single nucleotide. From this preliminary analysis, we conclude that there are at least four species of signaling ostracods in the sample set but possibly as many as nine. Once data are analyzed for all eleven, they will be compared to known species from other Caribbean locations to determine if they are new. Diversity and endemism are high in Caribbean cypridinids; we expect that these species are new to science. The Puerto Rico collections will be used in a large phylogenomic project to study the evolution of cypridinid bioluminescence and complex behavioral displays.