Northernmost record of the shamefaced crab Calappa granulata (Linnaeus, 1767) (Brachyura, Calappidae) in the Mediterranean area.
Crustaceana 85 (4/5):601-606. DOI: 10.2307/23212683.
The box crabs or shamefaced crabs (family Calappidae) are a distinctive group of marine crabs found in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. The family is best known for the shallow water genus Calappa with its unusual, shovel-shaped chelae. The shamefaced crab Calappa granulata is a sublittoral species known from the Mediterranean Sea and adjacent Atlantic Ocean from Portugal to Mauritania, including the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the Cape Verde Islands. Spanò et al. (2004) reported that shamefaced crabs are distributed in all oceans, but particularly abundant in tropical waters and inhabiting a wide variety of bottoms (sandy, shell grit, hard rocks, and coral). In the Mediterranean, C. granulata occurs between 10 and 400 m (though not very common), while some authors noted it lives on sandy mud and muddy detritus at depths between 13 and 400-700 m. Typically, it burrows in inshore soft bottoms. The species can reach 10 cm CL (carapace length) and 9.2 cm CW (carapace width). In recent years, it has been found in the Mediterranean Sea at several locations: in the Gulf of Taranto (Ionian Sea) , in the Strait of Sicily , in the coastal waters of the Sea of Marmara, and in Edremit Bay (Aegean Sea). In the Adriatic Sea, it is very rare and has only been found in areas of the Southern and Middle Adriatic. The last records of this species were from the Southern Adriatic, during trawling operations in the framework of the E.U. Project MEDITS.