Research Article

Seasonal Burrow Distribution of the Ghost Crab, Ocypode ceratophthalmus (Pallas, 1772), on Sandy Shores of Gujarat, India  

Jigneshkumar N. Trivedi , Kauresh D. Vachhrajani
Marine Biodiversity and Ecology Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Vadodara, Gujarat, India
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Marine Science, 2017, Vol. 7, No. 34   doi: 10.5376/ijms.2017.07.0034
Received: 26 Jul., 2017    Accepted: 18 Aug., 2017    Published: 08 Sep., 2017
© 2017 BioPublisher Publishing Platform
This is an open access article published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Preferred citation for this article:

Trivedi J.N., and Vachhrajani K.D., 2017, Seasonal burrow distribution of the ghost crab, Ocypode ceratophthalmus (Pallas, 1772), on sandy shores of Gujarat, India, International Journal of Marine Science, 7(34): 344-352 (doi: 10.5376/ijms.2017.07.0034)

Abstract

Seasonal variation in burrow distribution pattern of Ocypode ceratophthalmus (Pallas, 1772) was studied at four different sandy shores along the Saurashtra coast, Gujarat state, India. Burrow numbers were quantified in terms of three different ecological attributes like density, abundance and frequency of occurrence monthly for one year. Three different abiotic factors like sediment temperature, salinity and pH were measured for three seasons at each site. Burrow density, abundance and frequency of occurrence were varied significantly between different seasons and study sites. The sediment pH showed more impact on the burrow abundance as compared to other abiotic parameters. A strong positive correlation was observed between burrow opening diameter and crab carapace width, and burrow diameter and abundance also increased and decreased respectively from the lower to upper shore indicating that these attributes were highly dependent on crab body size. The highest burrow abundance was recorded in the monsoon season as compared to other seasons which is peak juvenile recruitment season of the species. The species is large in size and occurs in high abundance on sandy shores and the burrow distribution of the species is highly dependent on the seasons.

Keywords
Ghost crab; Seasonal variation; Abiotic factors; Saurashtra coast
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