Only four freshwater shrimp species from the genus MacrobrachiumSpence Bate, 1868 are known previously from Hong Kong, namely M. formosenseSpence Bate, 1868, M. hainanense (Parisi, 1919), M. meridionaleLiang & Yan, 1983, and M. nipponense (De Haan, 1849). This is likely an underestimate as a result of insufficient sampling, given that recent efforts revealed several new records in their counterpart family Atyidae, and the presence of many more Macrobrachium species from the region (i.e., Guangdong Province, China). We report the occurrence of three more species in Hong Kong: M. equidens (Dana, 1852), M. lar (Fabricius, 1798), M. venustum (Parisi, 1919), and a new species being described, M. lantausp. nov. The new species is erected from the highly variable M. equidens species complex, distinctive in live colouration and genetics. Decisive morphological differences from M. equidens sensu lato could not be confidently elucidated until the species complex is fully resolved. Molecular analysis shows that ‘M. hainanense’ reported from Hong Kong actually refers to M. laevisZheng, Chen & Guo, 2019. Morphological (and molecular) evidence suggest that M. inflatumLiang & Yan, 1985 and M. superbum (Heller, 1862) are possibly morphotypes and thus synonyms of M. nipponense. Macrobrachium hainanense and M. heterorhynchosGuo & He, 2008 are also likely synonyms of M. formosense and M. equidens, respectively. These species are, nevertheless, maintained as valid until examination of the type specimens concurs. The importance of an integrative approach and the associated matters needing attention in systematic studies of Macrobrachium are discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Kwok Chu Cheung, Wai Wah Wong, Ka Yan Ma, Nicola Wong, Chandler Tsang, and Zi Yi Kho (The Chinese University of Hong Kong), and Samuel Ho for their technical support and assistance in specimen collection. We also thank Tommy Hui, Chung Yi Tse, and Hung Tsun Cheng for providing information on species distribution. Special thanks to Peter K.L. Ng (Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, National University of Singapore) for providing essential literatures, and Jose Christopher E. Mendoza and Muhammad Dzaki Bin Safaruan (Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, National University of Singapore) for arranging loans of museum specimens. This work was supported by the General Research Fund (Project number CUHK14112920) from the Research Grants Council, University Grants Committee, Hong Kong SAR, China, and by the Lantau Conservation Fund (Grant number: LCF-RE-2021-02) from the Sustainable Lantau Office, Civil Engineering and Development Department, Hong Kong SAR Government, China.
© 2022 The Author(s).
- freshwater shrimps
- intra-specific variations
- southern China