Stenobermuda mergens Botosaneanu & Iliffe, 1999
Stenobermuda mergens: after Botosaneanu & Iliffe, 1999
Taxonomic Characterization: A stygobitic asellot isopod without eyes (ommatidia)
and completely depigmented. Ratio of body length/maximum width slightly
exceeding 3.5. Distal margin of cephalon with triangular, not very acute,
rostrum. Longest pereionites are II and III. Two very small pleonites.
Pleotelson relatively broad (Botosaneanu & Iliffe, 1999).
Disposition of Specimen: Zoölogisch Museum, Amsterdam.
Ecological Classification: Stygobitic
Size: male holotype body length 3.2 mm.
Number of Species in Genus: Four, two of which are stygobitic (S. mergens and S. iliffei).
Species Range: Known only from Conch Sound Blue Hole, Andros Island,
Closest Related Species: S. mergens, S. acutirostrata and S. iliffei are closely related species.
Habitat: Ocean blue hole limestone cave
Ecology: Collected by diving with a plankton net from 26 m depth, 750 m penetration inside this ocean blue hole (Botosaneanu and Iliffe, 1999).
Life History: Only a single male specimen has been collected from from Conch Sound Blue Hole, Andros Island.
Evolutionary Origins: S. mergens and S. iliffei are hypogean offshoots of S. acutirostrata, a shallow water marine species widely distributed in the Western Atlantic. Possibly other subterranean adapted species will be discovered in hypogean habitats inside the distribution area of the marine species. Colonization of subterranean aquatic habitats by shallow water marine elements in Gnathostenetroidoidea and Stenetrioidea is considered as being a general phenomena (Wägele, 1990).
Conservation Status: Restricted to a single blue hole cave on Andros Island; known only from a single specimen.
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