Alpheus tampensis, Anker, 2012

Anker, Arthur, 2012, Revision of the western Atlantic members of the Alpheus armillatus H. Milne Edwards, 1837 species complex (Decapoda, Alpheidae), with description of seven new species, Zootaxa 3386 (1), pp. 1-109 : 56-59

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.3386.1.1

persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Alpheus tampensis

sp. nov.

Alpheus tampensis sp. nov.

( Figures 38 –40, 64G, 65G, 66G)

Type material. USA: holotype: male (cl 14.1), FLMNH UF Arthropoda 15338, Florida , Tampa Bay , 3 km east of Sunshine Skyway Bridge, 27.631° -82.628°, spoil heap with sponges, Capetown dredge, 8–9 m, leg. G. Paulay, 06.02.2009 [fcn BFIO-025, dissected] ; paratypes: 1 ov. female (cl 14.3), FLMNH UF Arthropoda 15333, same collection data as for holotype [fcn BFIO-015]; 1 male (cl 14.4), FLMNH UF Arthropoda 18885, Florida , Tampa Bay , 1 km east of Sunshine Skyway Bridge, 27.626° -82.649°, spoil heap with sponges, Capetown dredge, 7–9 m, leg. J. Slapcinsky, 02.2009 [fcn BFIO-137] .

Diagnosis. Rostrum straight or slightly descendent, reaching well beyond half-length of first article of antennular peduncle; area posterior to rostral carina flattened, markedly and abruptly delimited from adjacent, deep rostro-orbital furrows, forming a rounded U-shaped post-rostral plate continuous with relatively narrow, dorsally slightly flattened rostral carina, margins of post-rostral plate distinctly overhanging rostro-orbital furrows and curving mesially in most-posterior part; post-rostral plate situated slightly above and gently sloping into rostral carina. Antennule with sctylocerite acute distally, not reaching distal margin of first article; ventromesial carina of first article with large tooth ending in subacute point below concave anterior margin; second article about 2.3 times as long as wide. Antenna with basicerite armed with stout distolateral tooth; scaphocerite with lateral margin shallowly concave; strong, sharp distolateral tooth reaching distinctly beyond narrow blade; carpocerite exceeding scaphocerite blade but not distolateral tooth, reaching far beyond end of antennular peduncles. Third maxilliped with ultimate article as broad as penultimate article, tapering distally. Major cheliped edwardsii - type (see under A. spiniform seta, distomesial tooth sharp; palm with dorsal shoulder rounded, clearly overhanging groove; ventral shoulder broadly rounded, not projecting, with field of minute tubercles laterally; fingers about 0.7 length of palm; pollex with poorly developed oblique ridge mesially; dactylus plunger short, truncate distally, proximal height about 0.4 length of distolateral margin, anterior angle very slight, superior to 90°. Female major cheliped smaller than male major cheliped and with somewhat different proportions. Male minor cheliped with merus relatively slender, distodorsal margin blunt, ventromesial margin smooth, without spiniform setae, distomesial tooth small, blunt; chela moderately stout, palm with length-height close to 1.9; palm with trace of longitudinal grooves laterally and shallow sinus ventrally without distinct ventral shoulder; fingers slightly shorter than ilar, moderately slender; ischium with stout spiniform seta; merus slightly less than six times as long as wide; propodus with stout spiniform setae, mostly inserted in pairs, along ventral margin, incuding one pair adjacent to dactylus; dactylus about 0.3 length of propodus. Fifth pereiopod much more slender than third and fourth; ischium with stout spiniform seta in males. Sternum at the base of fourth pereiopods without conspicuously projecting, slender, subacute processes. First and second abdominal sternites unarmed in both sexes. First to fourth pleopods with ventrolateral margin of protopod with only a few slender spiniform setae; male second pleopod with appendix masculina not exceeding appendix interna, densely covered with stiff setae apically and mesially. Uropod with exopod and endopod broadly rounded; exopod with sinuous diaeresis and stout distolateral spiniform seta; endopod with row of small spiniform setae on distal margin. Telson broad, slightly tapering posteriorly; dorsal surface with two pairs of spiniform setae inserted far from lateral margins; posterior margin broadly rounded, with row of slender spiniform setae; posterolateral angles each with two slender spiniform setae, mesial much longer than lateral ( Figs. 38, 39).

Variation. As in the other species of the A. armillatus complex, the major chela of A. tampensis sp. nov. is sexually dimorphic in size and proportions (Fig. 40A, C).

Size. The type specimens range from 14.1 to 14.4 mm cl (holotype: 14.1 mm, ovigerous female: 14.3 mm).

Colour pattern. Background pale orange-brown with uniform, fine, pale spotting on the abdomen, carapace and tail fan; postrostral plate with somewhat darker brown-orange margins; antennular and antennal flagella orange-yellow; major chela brown-orange with greenish, greyish and pale or whitish areas; minor chela mostly brown-orange; walking legs pinkish with white articulation areas; eggs yellow-orange (Fig. 40).

Etymology. Refers to Tampa Bay, the type locality of the new species; used as an adjective.

Type locality. West coast of Florida: Tampa Bay .

Distribution. Eastern Gulf of Mexico: presently known only from Tampa Bay area (see map in Fig. 70).

Ecology. All specimens were found among large pile of rocks (spoil heap) with sponges at a depth of 7– 9 m.

Remarks. The type series of A. tampensis sp. nov. was collected in Tampa Bay in February 2009, a few months after the publication of the molecular analysis of the A. armillatus complex ( Mathews & Anker 2009). However, based on its distinctive morphology and colour pattern, A. tampensis sp. nov. clearly belongs to Clade 1 of Mathews & Anker (2009), which also includes A. amarillo sp. nov., A. punctatus sp. nov. (see above), and the eastern Pacific A. scopulus .

Alpheus tampensis sp. nov. is most closely related to A. amarillo sp. nov. and A. punctatus sp. nov., but can be separated from both of them by the more rounded, posteriorly medially curving post-rostral plate (vs. more Vshaped, not medially curving in the other two species) and the ventromesial margin of the major cheliped merus smooth and unarmed (vs. more rugose, armed with small spiniform setae in the other two species; specifically from A. amarillo sp. nov. by the longer plunger of the major chela dactylus; and specifically from A. punctatus sp. nov. by the narrower rostro-orbital furrows; the broader ultimate article of the third maxilliped; and the stouter merus of the minor cheliped (cf. Figs. 27, 28, 33, 34, 38, 39). Alpheus tampensis sp. nov. can be easily distinguished from the more distantly related A. armillatus , A. lancirostris , A. verrilli , and A. angulosus , by the combination of characters summarised in Table 1.

The colour pattern of A. tampensis sp. nov. (Fig. 40) is distinct from that of A. amarillo sp. nov., A. punctatus sp. nov., or any other species of the A. armillatus complex. For example, A. tampensis sp. nov. differs from A. amarillo sp. nov. by the non-interconnecting pale spots on the abdomen (vs. many spots interconnecting in A. amarillo sp. nov.), and the absence of any pink-purple colour on the major chela (very characteristic of A. amarillo sp. nov.) (cf. Figs. 29, 30, 40). Alpheus tampensis sp. nov. also differs from A. punctatus sp. nov., e.g., by the pale spotting on the darker orange-brown background (vs. dark grey-brown spotting on the paler olive-greyish background in A. punctatus sp. nov.), and the orange-yellow colour of the antennular and antennal flagella, which are bluish in A. punctatus sp. nov. (cf. Figs. 36, 40).

GenBank accession numbers. Presently unavailable.


Florida Museum of Natural History


Florida Museum of Natural History- Zoology, Paleontology and Paleobotany