Biological Invasions

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 825–842 | Cite as

Evidence of multiple introductions and genetic admixture of the Asian brush-clawed shore crab Hemigrapsus takanoi (Decapoda: Brachyura: Varunidae) along the Northern European coast

  • Wataru Makino
  • Osamu Miura
  • Felix Kaiser
  • Mélanie Geffray
  • Tatsuya Katsube
  • Jotaro Urabe
Invasion Note


The Asian brush-clawed shore crab Hemigrapsus takanoi is a non-indigenous species along the Northern European coast. Although the history of range expansion of European H. takanoi has been well-documented, little is known about the genetic compositions of either the introduced European populations or the native Asian ones. We therefore collected H. takanoi broadly from their native Asian sites and introduced European ranges, and genotyped them by sequencing the mitochondrial 16S RNA gene and by analyzing nuclear microsatellite loci. Our results revealed that the H. takanoi Bay of Seine (France) populations consisted of a genetic admixture between populations in Japan and those in the Yellow Sea region. These French populations should be carefully monitored in the future, since the genetic admixture of multiple source populations may accelerate range expansion in non-indigenous organisms. Our results also suggested that shipping lines from East Asia were more probable vectors than historical juvenile oyster transportations from Japan for the foundation of present European H. takanoi populations. Interestingly, gene flow between populations in Japan and those in the Yellow Sea region (i.e., domestic invasion) was not observed despite the higher potential for artificial translocations via shipping lines in the native Asian range compared with those from Asia to Europe. The lack of domestic invasions implied that intra-specific priority effects of the resident H. takanoi populations played an important role in preventing the successful colonization of artificially-transferred individuals.


Colonization Dispersal Genetic admixture Intra-specific priority effects Multiple introductions 



Comments/suggestions/instructions from Susumu Chiba, Yuji Yamasaki, Ayako Suda, Takuya Kimura, the handling editor and anonymous referees significantly improved the manuscript, for which we are truly grateful. We are also grateful to Daiki Tazono, Akiyosi Shinada, Susumu Chiba, Takeshi Sonoda, Kentaro Watanabe, Kento Matsuo, Massa Nakaoka, Kenjiro Ui, Satoshi Takeda, Kyoko Kinoshita, Shin’ichiro Tsuchihashi, Takeshi Yuhara, Mitsuru Sato, Taeko Kimura, Atsushi Hirai, Tomohiro Koizumi, Koji Yamada, Tetsuya Watanabe, Jun’ya Tachikawa, Naotaka Miyajima, Tomoyuki Miura, Toru Kobari, Motohiro Shimanaga, Yoshio Kawamura, Yosuke Yamaguchi, Jiro Kawahara, Hiroyuki Doi, Yuji Tomaru, Masayuki Osawa, Masamu Fujiwara, Osamu Inamura, Mitsuhiro Fuwa, Tomoharu Kimura, Yoshihiko Machida, Ken Sakaguchi, Kotaro Kan, Masanori Sato, Shin’ichi Sato, S. Wijnhoven, J. Beermann, Maarten Boersma, and Ryuji J. Machida for helping us collect Hemigrapsus crabs. Invaluable suggestions and critical comments from AMH Blakeslee greatly improved the manuscript, for which we are grateful. The present study was supported by the Mitsui & Co., Ltd. Environmental Fund (F11-F1-020/R14-1009) and research project funds “Tohoku Ecosystem-Associated Marine Sciences (TEAMS)” from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan (MEXT).

Supplementary material

10530_2017_1604_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (5.2 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 5330 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Life SciencesTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  2. 2.Faculty of Agriculture and Marine ScienceKochi UniversityNankokuJapan

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