Decapod crustaceans are of tremendous interest and importance evolutionarily, ecologically, and economically. There is no shortage of publications reflecting the wide variety of ideas and hypotheses concerning decapod phylogeny, but until recently, the world’s leading decapodologists had never assembled to elucidate and discuss relationships among the major decapod lineages and between decapods and other crustaceans. Based on the findings presented by an international group of scientists at a symposium supported by the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, The Crustacean Society, and several other societies, and with major funding from the National Science Foundation, Decapod Crustacean Phylogenetics provides a comprehensive synopsis of the current knowledge of this vast and important group of animals.
This volume contains state-of-the-art reviews of literature and methodologies for elucidating decapod phylogeny. The contributions include studies on the fossil origin of decapods, morphological and molecular phylogenetic analyses, the evolution of mating and its bearing on phylogeny, decapod "evo-devo" studies, decapod spermiocladistics, and phylogenetic inference. The experts also present research on preliminary attempts to construct the first known phylogenetic tree for various groups of decapods. Several contributions offer the most comprehensive analyses to date on major clades of decapods, and others introduce data or approaches that could be used in the future to help resolve the phylogeny of the Decapoda.
Currently, the Decapoda contain an estimated 15,000 species, some of which support seafood and marine industries worth billions of dollars each year to the world’s economy. This volume is a fascinating overview of where we are currently in our understanding of these important creatures and their phylogeny and also provides a window into the future of decapod research. This work will be of great interest to researchers, instructors, and students in marine biology, evolutionary biology, crustacean biology, resource management, and biodiversity database management.