A panmictic fiddler crab from the coast of Brazil? Impact of divergent ocean currents and larval dispersal potential on genetic and morphological variation in Uca maracoani
Marine species tend to exhibit relatively less population structuring than terrestrial species owing to fewer barriers to gene flow and increased connectivity resulting from greater dispersal abilities. Thus, in many cases, life history plays a more important role in phylogeography of marine taxa than do oceanographic features. Littoral species are of particular phylogeographic interest because they possess life histories that have both marine and terrestrial characteristics. This study evaluates the synergistic impact of divergent ocean currents and a high larval dispersal potential on the phylogeography of the fiddler crab, Uca maracoani, distributed along the coast of Brazil. Patterns of genetic variation were assessed with sequence data for a portion of the mitochondrial COI gene and AFLPs. Geometric morphometric techniques were used to evaluate morphological variation. Results revealed a lack of discernible genetic subdivision. However, geometric morphometrics showed statistically significant morphological differentiation. The absence of a clear phylogeographic pattern appears to be determined primarily by life history characteristics permitting a high level of connectivity. One, or a combination of several factors, may explain the incongruity between genetic and morphologic signatures, including phenotypic plasticity, incomplete lineage sorting, or recent and ongoing genetic divergence. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
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DOI of published version
Wieman, A. C.; Berendzen, P. B.; Hampton, K. R.; Jang, J.; Hopkins, M. J.; Jurgenson, J.; McNamara, J. C.; and Thurman, C. L., "A panmictic fiddler crab from the coast of Brazil? Impact of divergent ocean currents and larval dispersal potential on genetic and morphological variation in Uca maracoani" (2014). Faculty Publications. 1512.