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Hemigrapsus takanoi
(brush-clawed shore crab)

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Datasheet

Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 16 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Hemigrapsus takanoi
  • Preferred Common Name
  • brush-clawed shore crab
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Crustacea
  •         Class: Malacostraca
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Hemigrapsus takanoi is a small crab native to the rocky coasts of northwest Pacific regions (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) from the Eastern Scheldt, Netherlands. January 2007
TitleAdult
CaptionHemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) from the Eastern Scheldt, Netherlands. January 2007
Copyright©Hans Hillewaert - CC BY-SA 3.0
Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) from the Eastern Scheldt, Netherlands. January 2007
AdultHemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) from the Eastern Scheldt, Netherlands. January 2007©Hans Hillewaert - CC BY-SA 3.0
Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in habitat.
TitleHabit
CaptionHemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in habitat.
Copyright©Arjan Gittenberger/GiMaRIS-2009
Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in habitat.
HabitHemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in habitat.©Arjan Gittenberger/GiMaRIS-2009
Adult Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in the hand.
TitleAdult
CaptionAdult Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in the hand.
Copyright©Arjan Gittenberger/GiMaRIS-2009
Adult Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in the hand.
AdultAdult Hemigrapsus takanoi (brush-clawed shore crab) in the hand.©Arjan Gittenberger/GiMaRIS-2009

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Hemigrapsus takanoi Asakura & Watanabe, 2005

Preferred Common Name

  • brush-clawed shore crab

Other Scientific Names

  • Hemigrapsus tanakoi Asakura & Watanabe, 2005 (misspelling)

International Common Names

  • English: japanese crab; pencil crab
  • French: crabe à pinceaux; crabe japonaise

Local Common Names

  • Netherlands: penseelkrab; penseelkrabbetje

Summary of Invasiveness

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Hemigrapsus takanoi is a small crab native to the rocky coasts of northwest Pacific regions (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005). H. takanoi belongs to the family Grapsoidea, which, along with the Portunoidea and Majiodia, have a high number of invasive species. It was first recorded in Europe in 1994. It was recorded in France as H. penicillatus, a sibling related species of H. takanoi, so previous records of H. penicillatus in Europe have now been identified as records of H. takanoi (Asakura et al., 2008). Possible vectors of introduction in Europe include accidental transport in hull fouling, ballast water and oyster shipments. It is considered invasive because it outcompetes the native European green crab Carcinus maenas in Europe in rocky shore habitats, particularly where it occurs in high densities. H. takanoi is now well established in Europe and is present along approximately 1,000 km of coastline, from Spain to the Wadden Sea from The Netherlands to Denmark to Lower Saxony in Germany to Sweden, and is common at many sites within this area (Gittenberger et al., 2010).

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Crustacea
  •                 Class: Malacostraca
  •                     Subclass: Eumalacostraca
  •                         Order: Decapoda
  •                             Suborder: Pleocyemata
  •                                 Family: Varunidae
  •                                     Genus: Hemigrapsus
  •                                         Species: Hemigrapsus takanoi

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Hemigrapsus takanoi is a small crab of the family Varunidae (formerly classified as Grapsidae). Recently, Asakura and Watanabe (2005) described Hemigrapsus takanoi as a sibling species of the most common Japanese intertidal grapsid crab, Hemigrapsus penicillatus De Haan (1835). Previously, the name Hemigrapsus penicillatus was used to cover animals that are now known to represent two distinct species.

In 1997 two forms were described in populations of H. penicillatus (Takano et al., 1997) and recognized as sibling species, with clear differentiating characteristics between the two (Akiwa, 2002; Mingkid et al., 2006a). The validity of this distinction was questioned by Sakai (2007) and rebutted by Asakura et al. (2008). The international scientific community seems largely to retain them as new species (Ng et al., 2008).

Description

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H. takanoi is a small crab: the cephalothorax regularly reaches 2.5 cm in its greatest dimension, with larger specimens hardly exceeding 3 cm; it has three spines. The general form of the shell is approximately square, slightly wider than long (ratio length/width is between 1.10 and 1.20). Dorsally, the colour still appears quite dark, greyish, greenish or brown; the walking legs, fairly broad and flattened, are usually marked with darker bands, more or less distinct in different individuals. The outer edge of the clamp of the male has a dense tuft of yellow bristles (known as setae) on their chelae (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005).

Distribution

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H. takanoi has only recently been distinguished from Hemigrapsus penicillatus; the true extent of its native geographical distribution is therefore not yet precisely known. The distribution of this species in Japan is so far confirmed as Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu. This species has also been found in Ishikari Bay, Hokkaido (Takano et al., 1999). H. penicillatus has previously been recorded in the north of Sakhalin island (Russia), in the south of Hong Kong, China, the Korea Peninsula, Okinawa island (south Japan) and Taiwan (Sakai, 1976). Its distribution in these areas remains largely unconfirmed, although recent studies have confirmed the species presence in Korean waters (Lee et al., 2013). In addition, there is a record of H. penicillatus from Hawaii by Edmondson (1959), but the supporting material is apparently lost, so its identification cannot be confirmed (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005).

When the first species of Hemigrapsus spp. was introduced to European coasts ca. 1995, Hemigrapsus takanoi (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005) had not yet been described, so the crab was named Hemigrapsus penicillatus De Haan (1835) (Noël et al., 1997). In subsequent years, this name was used many times for European records (Türkay, 2012). However, previous records of H. penicillatus in Europe were actually of H. takanoi (Asakura et al., 2008) and the genetic sequence H. takanoi collected in Japan showed a high degree of homology with that reported for specimens collected in Europe (Yamasaki et al., 2011).

Its non-native distribution is in the North Sea, Wadden Sea and Northeast Atlantic, where it is now established (Dauvin et al., 2009; Gollasch et al., 2009; Gittenberger et al., 2010; Landschoff et al., 2013). It was first documented in France in 1993 and is now present in Spain, Netherlands, Belgium and Germany (Noël et al., 1997 and references therein). The first confirmed occurance in Sweden was in 2016, of a male with a 15 mm carapace width at 58.248352°N 11.439560°E (Artportalen, 2016; University of Gothenburg, 2016).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes

Sea Areas

Atlantic, NortheastPresentIntroduced Invasive Noël et al., 1997Ranges from Northeast Spain to Germany
Pacific, NorthwestWidespreadNative Not invasive Asakura and Watanabe, 2005Northern Japan, some regions of Russia’s Pacific coast, Korea, China, Hong Kong and Taiwan

Asia

ChinaUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976; Asakura and Watanabe, 2005H. penicillatus, is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-GuangdongUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatusis present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-Hong KongUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Asakura and Watanabe, 2005H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-JiangsuUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-ShandongUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-ZhejiangUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
JapanPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-HokkaidoPresentNative Not invasive Takano et al., 1999
-HonshuPresentNative Not invasive Takano et al., 1999
-KyushuPresentNative Not invasive Takano et al., 1999
-Ryukyu ArchipelagoUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
-ShikokuPresentNative Not invasive Takano et al., 1999
Korea, DPRUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
Korea, Republic ofUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.
TaiwanUnconfirmed recordNative Not invasive Sakai, 1976H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed.

North America

USA
-HawaiiAbsent, unreliable recordIntroducedEdmondson, 1959; Asakura and Watanabe, 2005Recorded as H. penicillatus but presence of H. takanoi is unconfirmed.

Europe

BelgiumPresentIntroduced2003 Invasive Dumoulin, 2004; DAISIE, 2013
FranceIntroduced1993 Invasive Noël et al., 1997; Dauvin and Delhay, 2011; DAISIE, 2013First record in Europe
GermanyPresentIntroduced2007 Invasive Obert et al., 2007
NetherlandsPresentIntroduced2000 Invasive Breton et al., 2002; Wolff, 2005; DAISIE, 2013
Russian FederationPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Russian Far EastPresentNative Not invasive Asakura and Watanabe, 2005H. penicillatus is present but H. takanoi is unconfirmed. Sakhalin island
SpainPresentIntroduced1997 Invasive Noël et al., 1997
SwedenPresent, few occurrencesIntroducedArtportalen, 2016; University of Gothenburg, 2016Single male, 15 mm wide carapace, 58.248352°N 11.439560°E. Only known occurrance as of August 2016

History of Introduction and Spread

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H. takanoi Asakura and Watanabe (2005) was initially identified as H. penicillatus de Haan (1835) and was reported form a non-native area for the first time in La Rochelle, on the Atlantic coast of France, in 1994. It is thought to have arrived in 1993 (Noël et al., 1997) and in the same year six juveniles were detected on the hull fouling of a Japanese vessel in Bremerhaven (Germany). The ship was known to have passed the French coast so it is likely that this vessel could have been a potential vector for introduction into the French coast (Gollasch, 1999).

By 1997, its range in Europe extended around the Bay of Biscay, from Fromentine in France to Laredo in Spain, and it had become locally abundant, covering a coastline of 700 kilometres (Noël, et al., 1997). By 1999 it had reached Le Havre on the English Channel (Dauvin et al., 2009), where it formed abundant populations of juveniles. It reached the Eastern Scheldt (Netherlands) in 1999 (Breton et al., 2002) and Oosterschelde tidal bay and the Westerschelde estuary (The Netherlands) in the year 2000, but probably arrived earlier in 1999, and could be found throughout the Dutch delta (D’udekem D’acoz and Faasse, 2002; Wolff, 2005). It was also reported on the Belgian coast in the Westerschelde near Baalhoek in 2003 (Dumoulin, 2004) and, by 2005, it had reached the French Opal Coast at the entrance to the North Sea (Dauvin et al., 2009).

By the end of 2007, the population of the Bay of Biscay had spread to Brittany, reaching Lorient harbour (Noël and Gruet, 2008). In the English Channel and the North Sea, H. takanoi is present in Bay of Seine (Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue, Normandy, and Le Havre), and from the Opal Coast (Dauvin and Delhay, 2011) through to the Belgian coast in Zeeschelde estuary (Soors et al., 2010) to the tidal zone near Norddeich along the German coast in Bremerhaven (Lower Saxony) (Obert et al., 2007). Recently, it has been reported in Sweden (NORSAS, 2012). The species has not yet reached the British coast (Dauvin et al., 2009).

Introductions

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Introduced toIntroduced fromYearReasonIntroduced byEstablished in wild throughReferencesNotes
Natural reproductionContinuous restocking
Belgium France 2003 Yes Dumoulin (2004)
Belgium Netherlands 2003 Yes Dumoulin (2004)
France Japan 1993 Hitchhiker (pathway cause) Yes Noël et al. (1997) Ballast water/hull fouling
Germany Netherlands 2007 Yes Obert et al. (2007)
Netherlands France 1999-2000 Yes Breton et al. (2002); D'udekem and D'acoz Faasse (2002); Wolff (2005)
Spain France 1997 Yes Noël et al. (1997)

Habitat

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The species predominantly inhabits intertidal areas of mudflats, estuaries and lagoons with sufficient shelter opportunities, typically among rocks and boulders, but can also be found in soft sediment and occasionally in subtidal regions (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005). H. takanoi is found in mid to low intertidal areas, occasionally sub-tidal (to 20 m), among rocks, cobbles and soft sediment (Brockerhoff and McLay, 2011).

It is generally found in more wave-sheltered areas than H. penicillatus, although the two species often occur sympatrically (Asakura and Watanabe, 2005). Mingkid et al. (2006a) examined the geographical distribution patterns of the two species along the coast of Tokyo Bay and found that H. takanoi was predominant in the inner part of the bay, whereas H. penicillatus was collected mainly along the middle to outer coasts of the bay.

In its introduced area (France), it is found in sheltered areas of the mid-littoral (Noël et al., 1997; Dauvin et al., 2009) and has a preference for low hydrodynamic muddy habitats (Dauvin, 2009). H. takanoi occupies the same habitat as H. sanguineus, but the latter occurrs in large numbers on the rocky shore of the open sea, while H. takanoi is abundant in sheltered harbours (Dauvin et al., 2009). Additionally, H. takanoi thrives in the new habitat provided by the expanding oyster reefs of Crassostrea gigas (Pacific oyster) in the Dutch delta waters (Brink van den et al., 2012a).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Littoral
Coastal areas Principal habitat Natural
Intertidal zone Principal habitat Natural
Salt marshes Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Brackish
Estuaries Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Lagoons Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Marine
 
Benthic zone Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

H. takanoi can be distinguished from its the sibling species H. penicillatus by genetics, according to work by Yamasaki et al. (2011). The genetic sequence of H. takanoi specimens collected in Japan showed a high degree of homology with the genetic sequence reported for specimens collected in Europe. Hybridization between H. takanoi and its sibling species H. penicillatus in its native range has not been recorded.

Reproductive Biology

Although there is limited information about the life history of H. takanoi, and although larval phases have not yet been described (Yamasaki et al., 2011), the similarities between the species and the more commonly documented H. penicillatus suggest that their life histories are probably similar. Assuming this, H. takanoi females became ovigerous at 1 year old and the minimum body size of ovigerous individuals is about 6.4 mm CW. The breeding season is from spring to autumn. The incubation period shows little variation at a given water temperature, but shortens with rising temperature (Fukui, 1988).

Mean number of broods is between 5 to 6 per year and the number of eggs per brood is 56,000; the number is related to the female carapace width. H. penicillatus has approximately three times as many eggs per body size as H. sanguineus (Fukui, 1988). The size of the eggs is about 0.2814 mm (Akiwa, 2002). Once hatched, larvae are planktonic for up to one month before becoming juvenile crabs (EOEEA, 2012). Growth and maturation are rapid (Pillay and Ono, 1978), and crabs reach maturity after several months (Brink van den et al., 2012b).

High salinities are required for successful larval development of H. takanoi. In an experiment with water temperature of about 24ºC, the development of H. takanoi larvae, from hatching to the first juvenile stage, occurred only in high salinities (from 25 to 35 per mil). At very low salinities only a few larvae metamorphosed to the second zoeal stage and no larvae developed further than the megalopa stage (Mingkid et al., 2006b).

The duration of brood and larval development is highly dependent on water temperature.

Physiology and Phenology

The larvae are planktonic for up to one month. During this period, before the larvae develop into juvenile crabs, they may be transported considerable distances by currents. Larvae may also be transported in ships’ ballast water before being released into harbours or bays (Mingkid et al., 2006a). The estimated growth rate of immature crabs is similar between males and females. After maturity, however, the estimated growth rate is apparently lower in females than in males (Fukui, 1988).

H. takanoi expends increased metabolic effort to tolerate abrupt reductions in salinity compared to changes towards increasingly brackish water or seawater (Shinji et al., 2009).

Activity Patterns

As with H. penicillatus, H. takanoi would be expected to show territorial behaviour among individuals with the same size of caparace (Kurihara and Okamoto, 1987).

Population Size and Density

In France it is found reaching high densities of up to 50-60 individuals/m2 (Dauvin et al., 2009). It has reached almost 80 m−2 on the Dutch coast (Brink van den, 2012a).

Associations

In the northeast Atlantic H. takanoi (formerly presumed to be H. penicillatus) occupies the same habitat as the native crab Carcinus maenas and the exotic crab H. sanguineus (Breton et al., 2002). H. sanguineus occurrs in large numbers on the rocky shore of the open sea, while H. takanoi is abundant in sheltered harbours (Dauvin et al., 2009). In its non-native range it is associated with mussels or oysters, such as the Japanese oyster Crassostrea gigas (Dumoulin, 2004).

Environmental Requirements

In its native range H. takanoi can be commonly found in bays and estuaries, including areas where salinities and temperatures fluctuate highly (7-35 per mil and 12.5-20ºC, respectively) (Mingkid et al., 2006a). The adults of H. takanoi have a wide tolerance range of water salinity, thereby enhancing its ability to colonize coastal habitats with high fluctuations in salinity (Shinji et al., 2009).

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
C - Temperate/Mesothermal climate Preferred Average temp. of coldest month > 0°C and < 18°C, mean warmest month > 10°C
D - Continental/Microthermal climate Preferred Continental/Microthermal climate (Average temp. of coldest month < 0°C, mean warmest month > 10°C)

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
20-60

Water Tolerances

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ParameterMinimum ValueMaximum ValueTypical ValueStatusLife StageNotes
Salinity (part per thousand) 7 35 Optimum
Water temperature (ºC temperature) 12.5 20 Optimum

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Enteromyces callianassae Parasite to genus No
Microphallus Parasite to genus No
Polyascus polygenea Parasite to genus No
Sacculina nigra Parasite to genus No
Sacculina senta Parasite to genus No

Notes on Natural Enemies

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Potential predators would include some bottom-feeding fishes; birds and other crabs have also been recorded as preying upon grapsid crabs occasionally (Fukui, 1988). In its non-native range birds such as herons and sea-gulls are predators of H. takanoi (Noel et al., 1997).

Parasites of two brachyurans of the varunid genus Hemigrapsus are known from their native habitats, but, except for an undescribed larval nematode, none have been found in those examined from non-native locations. These parasites include the metacercariae of eight species of Microphallid trematode, the rhizocephalan barnacles Polyascus polygenea, Sacculina nigra and Sacculina senta, and the obligate gut-inhabiting mesomycetozoan Enteromyces callianassae (potential parasite) (McDermott, 2011).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Natural Dispersal (Non-Biotic)

Natural dispersal following initial introductions occurs when pelagic larvae are dispersed by currents. Dauvin and Dufossé (2011) proposed that the spread of Hemigrapsus sp. may be predicted by taking account of the current direction along the French coast of the English channel.

Vector Transmission (Biotic)

No spread on live animal vectors that are not transported commercially is recorded.

Accidental Introduction

H. takanoi has been introduced to European waters in its larval form; hull fouling communities (Gollasch, 1999) and ballast water (Gollasch et al., 2009) are the principal vectors. Landschoff et al. (2013) describe the rapid spread of this species in the Wadden Sea and emphasise that it is the crabs ability to cling to surfaces and hide in narrow crevices that allows it to travel widely on ship trunks, in anchor boxes, on ropes, or inside ballast water systems. Invasion in the Wadden Sea is also likely to have been made possible by the increased use of hard coastal defences, changing the habitat from a predominately soft environment to one suitable for rocky shore species (Landschoff et al., 2013).

It has been suggested that professional oyster transportation could be responsible for the introduction of H. takanoi along some parts of the French coast (Dauvin and Delhay, 2011; Noel, 2011) and The Netherlands (Nijland, 2000; Faasse et al., 2002).

Intentional Introduction

There are no recorded cases of intentional introduction of H. takanoi.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
FisheriesIntroduction to parts of French and Dutch coasts may be due to oyster transportation Yes Dauvin and Delhay, 2011; Faasse et al., 2002; Nijland, 2000; Noel, 2011
HitchhikerAccidental introduction Yes Gollasch, 1999

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Ship ballast water and sedimentLarval/adult Yes Gollasch et al., 2009
Ship hull foulingLarval/adult Yes Gollasch, 1999
WaterNatural dispersal following initial introductions occurs when pelagic larvae dispersed by currents Yes Dauvin and Dufossé, 2011

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Environment (generally) Negative

Environmental Impact

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Impact on Biodiverisity

H. takanoi outcompetes the native European green crab Carcinus maenas in Europe, particularly in rocky shore habitats, where it occurs in high densities (Noel et al, 1997; Gollasch, 1999; Dauvin et al. 2009). H. takanoi completely dominated the intertidal hard substrate environments, on which juvenile C. maenas depend, by expelling C. maenas from their shelters. On soft sediment substrate, where H. takanoi densities are low, the native and exotic shore crab species are presently more or less equally abundant (Brink van den et al., 2012a). Both species may compete for food, as stomach content analysis has shown that the optimal-sized prey for Carcinus spp. is similar to that of H. takanoi in the latter’s native range (Wataru et al., 2011).

Its recent invasion and establishment in the coastal and delta waters in the Netherlands is thought to impact especially upon newly settled shellfish, such as mussel and oyster splat through predation (Brink van den, 2013).  

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Tolerant of shade
  • Capable of securing and ingesting a wide range of food
  • Highly mobile locally
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Gregarious
Impact outcomes
  • Altered trophic level
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Increases vulnerability to invasions
  • Modification of natural benthic communities
  • Modification of nutrient regime
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts aquaculture/fisheries
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - shading
  • Herbivory/grazing/browsing
  • Interaction with other invasive species
  • Predation
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally accidentally
  • Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant
  • Difficult to identify/detect in the field
  • Difficult/costly to control

Detection and Inspection

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In order to distinguish the sibling species H. penicillatus and H. takanoi without specific taxonomic knowledge, barcode analysis using the 16S rRNA gene and the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene of the mitochondrial (mt) DNA, identified by Yamasaki et al. (2011), could be used. They found that polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) analysis is highly effective for the distinction of these two species. More detail about the sequence can be found in NCBI (2012).These molecular techniques can also be used to help detect the presence of H. takanoi larvae in ballast water.

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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H. takanoi has a sibling species, H. penicillatus; both species are very similar in morphology. The key character separating both species is the difference in the pigmentation patterns on the ventral face of the abdominal somites: H. penicillatus has dark spots on that surface, which are lacking in H. takanoi, and males of H. penicillatus have a smaller ratio of the diameter of the patch of setae on the chela than H. takanoi (Takano et al., 1997; Asakura and Watanabe, 2005; Mingkid et al., 2006a). By these criteria, 99% of the individuals are clearly separated into the two species (Mingkid et al., 2006a).

Another species similar to H. takanoi is H. sanguineus, which has also established invasive populations in Europe. Breton et al. (2002) and D’udekem d’Acoz (2006) provided descriptions and figures to differentiate both species.

Prevention and Control

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Prevention

The management of H. takanoi requires appropriate treatment/exchange of ballast water; removal of hull fouling may limit or prevent its introduction. In the Wadden Sea, a change from using hard structures for sea defences to soft defences could limit further spread of this species (Landschoff et al., 2013).   

Early Warning Systems

H. takanoi is included as a species still exotic to Australia by the Australian Emergency Marine Pest Plan (EMPPlan).

Public Awareness

On the West Coast of the USA, this species has been identified as a potential invader and ID cards have prepared by the Massachusetts office of Coastal Zone Management to increase public awareness (EOEEA, 2012).

Monitoring and Surveillance (incl. Remote Sensing)

Its high colonization potential suggests that H. takanoi could continue its invasion in European waters. Therefore, a European surveillance network might be necessary to monitor its progression in the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean.

Gaps in Knowledge/Research Needs

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Research is needed on the environmental impact of H. takanoi. In addition, a management plan to control this species must be developed. Due to the recognition of H. takanoi as a sibling species of H. penicillatus since 2005, it is also necessary to revise the current distribution of the species in its non-native and native range. H. takanoi has the adaptive capabilities to inhabit European coasts, although the detailed physiological and ecological reasons have not been fully studied (Asakura et al., 2008).

References

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Akiwa S, 2002. Distribution of two forms of Hemigrapsus penicillatus along the coast of Tokyo Bay. Tokyo, Japan: Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, 1-13.

Artportalen, 2016. Artportalen. https://www.artportalen.se/

Asakura A; Mingkid W; Yamasaki I; Watanabe S, 2008. Revalidation of Hemigrapsus takanoi Asakura amp; Watanabe, 2005: A rebuttal to 'Sakai (2007): Comments on an invalid nominal species, Hemigrapsus takanoi Asakura amp; Watanabe, 2005, a synonym of Hemigrapsus penicillatus (De Haan, 1835) (Decapoda, Brachyura, Grapsidae)'. Crustaceana: International Journal of Crustacean Research, 81:1263-1274.

Asakura A; Watanabe S, 2005. Hemigrapsus takanoi, a new species, a sibling species of the common Japanese intertidal crab H. penicillatus (Decapoda: Brachyura: Grapsidae). Journal of Crustacean Biology, 25(2):279-292.

Breton G; Faasse M; Noel P; Vincent T, 2002. A new alien crab in Europe: Hemigrapsus sanguineus (Decapoda: Brachyura: Grapsidae). Journal of Crustacean Biology, 22:184-189.

Brink AM van den, 2013. Reproduction in crabs: strategies, invasiveness and environmental influences thereon. Wageningen, Netherlands: Wageningen Universiteit (Wageningen University), viii + 164 pp.

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Links to Websites

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WebsiteURLComment
GISD/IASPMR: Invasive Alien Species Pathway Management Resource and DAISIE European Invasive Alien Species Gatewayhttps://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m93f6Data source for updated system data added to species habitat list.
Global register of Introduced and Invasive species (GRIIS)http://griis.org/Data source for updated system data added to species habitat list.
National Introduced Marine Pest Information System (Australia)http://adl.brs.gov.au/marinepests/index.cfm?fa=main.spDetailsDB&sp=6000017979

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31/01/13 Original text by:

Manuel A Duenas, Consultant, Spain

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