The crustacean superorder Peracarida presents a unique lack of larval phase and consequent low dispersion, leading to high rates of endemism. Among the most diverse orders of Peracarida are Amphipoda, Isopoda and Tanaidacea, which are also the main groups of crustaceans associated with macrophyte banks. Despite the low dispersive rate of such groups of crustaceans, recent changes in surface currents may have displaced masses of the brown seaweed of the genus Sargassum, possibly carrying with them alien species. To date, studies of phylogeography of Peracarida in Brazil are scarce, and practically null in coastal and oceanic islands. The main objectives of this project are to understand and to recover the evolutionary history of Peracarida species considered widely distributed in coastal and oceanic islands, to compare with continental populations and to understand the biogeography of the possible species complexes of the most representative genera of Peracarida associated with Sargassum. Therefore, it is expected to understand the genetic structuring patterns of the key species with low dispersion crustaceans in isolated environments. This is the first phylogeographic study of Peracarida in Brazilian islands and aims to contribute to the knowledge of distribution and evolution of some of the main groups of Crustacea.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: