, Volume 287, Issue 1, pp 131–145 | Cite as

Pattern and process in the biogeography of subterranean amphipods

  • John R. Holsinger


The comparative data from studies of two ‘superfamily’ groups with large numbers of subterranean taxa, the exclusively freshwater Crangonyctoidea and the predominately marine Hadzioidea, support the hypothesis that distributional patterns and evolutionary processes of stygobiont amphipods are closely linked and that the former can be a useful indicator of the latter. Three major biogeographic patterns are indicated by the distribution of subterranean species in these groups, each apparently reflecting a particular mode of origin: (1) freshwater stygobionts (limnostygobionts) derived from epigean freshwater ancestors through colonizations probably influenced by adaptive shifts, or assisted by stream capture and spring failure; (2) freshwater stygobionts derived from marine/brackish water ancestors by stranding during regression of marine embayments; and (3) marine/brackish water stygobionts (thalassostygobionts) derived from epigean marine/brackish water ancestors through adaptive shifts possibly in concert with fluctuating sea levels.

Key words

Amphipoda biogeography subterranean 


Vergleichende Untersuchungen zweier Superfamilien, jede mit einer grossen Anzahl unterirdischer Taxa, die ausschiesslich im Süsswasser verbreiteten Crangonyctoidea und die vorwiegend marinen Hadzioidea, stützen die Hypothese, dass Verbreitungsmuster und phylogenetische Prozesse stygobionter Amphipoden eng miteinander verbunden sind, und dass Erstere ein nützlicher Indikator für Letztere sind. Die Verbreitung unterirdischer Arten in dieser Gruppe weist auf drei biogeographische Muster hin, von denen jedes eine bestimmte Herkunft reflecktiert: (1) Süsswasser-Stygobionten (Limnostygobionten) können durch Kolonisation, wahrscheinlich beeinflusst durch Veränderungen in der Anpassung, aus epigäischen Süsswasser-Vorfahren hergeleitet werden, oder unterstützt durch ‘stream capture’ and ‘spring failure’ (Versiegen von Quellen); (2) Süsswasser-Stygobionten stammen von marinen/Brackwasser-Vorfahren ab, welche im Verlauf der marinen Regression ‘gestrandet’ sind: und (3) marine/Brackwasser-Stygobionten (Thalassostygobionten) enstammen epigäischen marinen/Brackwasser-Vorfahren durch Veränderungen in der Anpassung in Zusammenhang mit Wasserstandsänderungen.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • John R. Holsinger
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesOld Dominion UniversityNorfolkUSA

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