Spelaeoecia mayan Kornicker & Iliffe, 1998
Taxonomic Characterization: Carapace uncalcified, flexible and elongate. The dorsal margin is straight and slightly lower near posterior end. Ventral margin convex. Posterodorsal corner of right valve with small glandular-bearing protuberance. Surface with few long single bristles (Kornicker & Iliffe, 1998).
Disposition of Specimens: National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, catalog numbers USNM 194268, 194321-2, 194405, 194533.
Ecological Classification: Stygobitic
Size: Adult male carapace length up to 1.31 mm; adult female to 1.46 mm.
Number of Species in Genus: Ten, all from anchialine caves.
Spelaeoecia: genus range
Species Range: Known only from Mayan Blue Cenote, Tulum (type locality),
and 27 Steps Cenote (Kornicker and Iliffe, 2000), both in Quintana Roo, Yucatan
Closest Related Species: S. mayan closely resembles S. bermudensis from Bermuda.
Habitat: Anchialine limestone caves
Ecology: Collected in fully marine salinity waters (35 ppt) in depths of 17-21 m.
Life History: Six specimens have been collected - 2 adult males and 4 adult females. This genus is believed to have seven stages. Of the six juvenile stages, instars III-VI probably have been identified.
Evolutionary Origins: The evolutionary origins of stygobitic ostracodes remain undetermined. They may have originated from the deep sea (Iliffe 1990:95; 1991:227-228) or from shallow water crevices (Danielopol, 1990:141; Danielopol et al., 1996:82). These ostracodes may have been in shallow anchialine pools and then migrated to the more stable cave environment (Iliffe in Kornicker and Iliffe, 1998:2). The genera Deeveya Kornicker & Iliffe, 1985 and Spelaeoecia Angel & Iliffe, 1987 comprise the subfamily Deeveyinae Kornicker & Iliffe, 1985. The distribution of this subfamily is restricted to the Caribbean, West Indies, Bermuda, and Yucatan Peninsula.
Conservation Status: Restricted to two caves in the Yucatan Peninsula
Contributor: Louis S. Kornicker, National Museum of
Natural History, Washington, DC
|Please email us your comments and questions.||Last modified:|