Biological Invasions

, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 983–989 | Cite as

Cryptic diversity within the invasive virile crayfish Orconectes virilis (Hagen, 1870) species complex: new lineages recorded in both native and introduced ranges

  • Lenka Filipová
  • David M. Holdich
  • Jérôme Lesobre
  • Frédéric Grandjean
  • Adam PetrusekEmail author
Invasion Note


The virile crayfish (Orconectes virilis) represents a cryptic species complex with several lineages known in the USA, and a wide introduced range. In Europe, O. virilis is an emerging invader, established during the last decade in at least two areas—one in the United Kingdom and another in the Netherlands. We assessed the position of both known European populations within the species complex by sequencing part of the mitochondrial gene for cytochrome c oxidase subunit I. Tested UK and Dutch individuals did not belong to any mitochondrial lineage recorded in North America so far but formed a separate clade, the original distribution area of which is unknown. Additionally sequenced virile crayfish from Iowa (USA) also represented a new clade, suggesting that undiscovered lineage variation within O. virilis remains high. This exemplifies that genetic analyses of invading populations may provide new insights into diversity of a taxon in its original range.


Invasive crayfish Cryptic diversity North America Europe COI 



This study has been funded by the Grant Agency of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (project IAA601870701) and the Czech Ministry of Education (project MSM0021620828). Zdeněk Ďuriš provided the sample of O. virilis from Iowa, Bram Koese samples from the Netherlands, and Adam Ellis from the River Lee (UK). We thank Daniel Simberloff for corrections improving the previous version of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lenka Filipová
    • 1
  • David M. Holdich
    • 2
  • Jérôme Lesobre
    • 3
  • Frédéric Grandjean
    • 3
  • Adam Petrusek
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Faculty of Science, Department of EcologyCharles University in PraguePrague 2Czech Republic
  2. 2.EMEC EcologyThe Old Ragged SchoolNottinghamUK
  3. 3.Laboratoire Ecologie, Evolution, Symbiose, UMR CNRS 6556Université de PoitiersPoitiers CedexFrance

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