Population Biology of Uca maracoani in a Tropical Mangrove

  • D. S. Azevedo
  • J. V. C. L. Silva
  • D. S. Castiglioni


The aim of the present study was to characterize the population dynamics of the fiddler crab Uca maracoani in a mangrove area of the Formoso River, state of Pernambuco, northeast of Brazil. Samplings were performed monthly (April 2009 to March 2010) by one collector during 30 min at the low tide. A total of 1198 individuals (753 males and 445 females) were sampled, and all of them had measured the carapace width (CW), the major cheliped propodus length of males (CPL) and the abdomen width of females (AW). Sex and the ovigerous condition were recorded. Mean size of males (CW) (22.9 ± 6.61 mm) was significantly greater than that of females (20.2 ± 5.2 mm). Morphological sexual maturity estimated for males and females was 15.8 and 13.8 mm of CW, respectively. In the size-frequency distribution of both sexes, the population showed two cohorts, consisting of a juvenile group and an adult group. Sex ratio was diverted in favor of males (1.6:1.0), and males were more frequent in larger size classes. The reproductive period was based on the low rate of ovigerous females found throughout the year, occurring from June to August 2009. The recruitment was continuous throughout the year, but more intense during spring. Results of the present study are the first recorded from the state of Pernambuco and not only enabled a better comprehension of the population biology of U. maracoani along its latitudinal distribution, but also allowed to observe the population stability in the Formoso River mangrove.


Body size Sexual maturity Sex ratio Mangrove Fiddler crab 



The authors are grateful to the Fundação de Amparo à Ciência e Tecnologia do Estado de Pernambuco (FACEPE), for financial support for fieldwork to D.S.C (APQ: 0108-2.04/07), and to CNPq for a fellowship to D.S.C. (Bolsa de Desenvolvimento Científico Regional - DCR) and D.S.A. (scientific initiation—PIBIC/CNPq/UFPE). We are grateful to Adriano Martins for his help during fieldwork. All sampling in this study was conducted in compliance with current applicable state and federal laws (ICMBio 14340-1).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. S. Azevedo
    • 1
  • J. V. C. L. Silva
    • 2
  • D. S. Castiglioni
    • 3
  1. 1.Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Pernambuco (IFPE)RecifeBrazil
  2. 2.Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE)Vitoria de Santo AntaoBrazil
  3. 3.Department of Animal Science and Biological SciencesFederal University of Santa Maria (UFSM)Palmeira das MissoesBrazil

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