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The Natural History of Callianassa californiensis Dana

G. E. MacGinitie
The American Midland Naturalist
Vol. 15, No. 2 (Mar., 1934), pp. 166-177
DOI: 10.2307/2420244
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2420244
Page Count: 12
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The Natural History of Callianassa californiensis Dana
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Abstract

1. Callianassa californiensis is abundant in mud flats of bays and estuaries on the west coast of North America. 2. Individuals are quite awkward and helpless outside their burrows. 3. The burrows are extensive and are being added to continually because the animals sift sandy mud for its contained detritus. 4. The food of Callianassa consists entirely of detritus. 5. The continual turning over of the soil and the aeration of the subsoil by the burrows of this animal is important to the entire community of muddwellers. 6. Colonies of the shrimps show more or less regular succession. 7. These shrimps have seven commensals, ranging from Hemicyclops callianassae and Harmothoe sp. nov., which are specific, through the two crabs Pinnixa franciscana and Scleroplax granulata, the shrimp, Betaeus sp. nov., and the clam, Cryptomya californica, which may inhabit the burrows of other species also, to the goby, Clevelandia ios, which makes use of the burrow as a refuge or while the tide is out. 8. Knowledge of the intimate life histories of the more important members is essential to an understanding of an association.

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