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Phylum Arthropoda
Subphylum Crustacea
Class Malacostraca
Order Amphipoda
Family Hadziidae

Bahadzia obliqua Stock, 1986

Taxonomic Characterization:
Amphipod lacking eyes and pigment. B. obliqua can be distinguished from other Bahadzia by the following characteristics by:

  • The lobe of merus of the first gnathopod is not distally produced.
  • The coxal gills are large.
  • The female's carpus of the second gnathopod is greater than or equal to the propodus.
  • The third maxillipedal palp segment is distally wide.
  • The female's palm of the second gnathopod is oblique.
  • The third mandible palp segment does not have A-setae.

A key to the genus is presented in Jaume & Wagner, 1998.

Disposition of Specimens: Zo÷logisch Museum Amsterdam collection number ZMA Amphipod 107.881.

Ecological Classification: Stygobitic

Size: The female holotype is 5.5 mm.

Number of Species in Genus: Nine (8 anchialine and 1 freshwater), all stygobitic

Genus Range:

  • Bahamas:
  • Caicos Islands:
  • Cuba: B. yagerae Ortiz & Perez, 1995
  • Dominican Republic: B. jaraguensis Jaume & Wagner, 1998
  • Haiti: B. latipalpus Stock, 1985
  • Mexico:
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Genus range for Bahadzia

Species Range: Known only from Big Fountain Blue Hole, Cat Island, Great Bahama Bank, Bahamas.

Closest Related Species: B. williamsi. The genus Bahadzia is restricted to the West Indies and Mexico. All species are closely related, and it is unclear if they are distinct species or are subspecies (Stock, 1986). The only freshwater species, B. latipalpus, has the most distinct morphology, while the anchialine species more closely resemble each other.

Habitat: Anchialine limestone cave.

Ecology: Free-swimming at a depth of 32 m in fully marine salinity waters below the halocline. Bacterial growth at the halocline may provide a primary food resource for the associated cave fauna.

Life History: Unknown. Most amphipods carry their eggs and juveniles in a brood pouch. They do not have larvae or resting stages. These attributes affect their dispersal capacities and thus, contribute to their endemism.

Evolutionary Origins: The genus Bahadzia is phylogenetically with Mayaweckelia and Tuluweckelia. "It may be an ancient relict derived from an early hadziid fauna in the old Tethyan seaway" (Holsinger et al., 1986).

Conservation Status: Restricted to a single cave; only a single female specimen has been collected.


  • Holsinger, J.R. 1992. Two new species of the subterranean amphipod genus Bahadzia (Hadziidae) from the Yucatan Peninsula region of southern Mexico, with an analysis of phylogeny and biogeography. Stygologia, 7:85-105.
  • Holsinger, J.R., D. Williams, J. Yager, and T.M. Iliffe. 1986. Zoogeographic implications of Bahadzia, a hadziid amphipod crustacean recently described from anchialine caves in the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands. Stygologia, 2:77-83.
  • Holsinger, J.R. and J. Yager. 1985. A new genus and two new species of subterranean amphipod crustaceans (Hadziidae) from the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands. Bijdragen tot de Dierkunde, 55(2):283-294.
  • Jaume, D. and H.P. Wagner 1998. New cave-dwelling amphipods (Lysianassidae, Hadziidae) from the Dominican Republic (Hispaniola). Contributions to Zoology, 68(1):37-66 19 figures.
  • OrtÝz, M.R. and A. PÚrez. 1995. Una nueva especie de anfipodo cavernÝcola hadzioideo (Amphipoda, Gammaridea) de Cuba. Graellsia, 51:165-168.
  • Stock, J.H. 1985. Stygobiont amphipod crustaceans of the Hadzioid group form Haiti. Bijdragen tot de Dierkunde, 55:331-426.
  • Stock, J.H. 1986. Two new amphipod crustaceans of the genus Bahadzia from 'blue holes' in the Bahamas and some remarks on the origin of the insular stygofaunas of the Atlantic. Journal of Natural History, 20:921-933, 5 figures.


Contributor: John R. Holsinger, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA

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