Australian Amphipoda: Aoridae

J.K. Lowry, P.B. Berents and R.T. Springthorpe
Division of Invertebrate Zoology
The Australian Museum
6 College Street, Sydney, NSW 2010, Australia
Phone: 612 9320 6260
Fax: 612 9320 6050

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Myers & Moore (1983) produced the first major work on Australian aorid amphipods. In this paper they described three new species and redescribed three existing species in the genus Aora . Myers (1988) described the Aorinae (Archaeobemlos, Bemlos, Protolembos and Globosolembos) of Australia and recorded 26 species, of which 16 were new species, and five species, which were not previously known from Australia, were redescribed. Of the 46 species known from Australian waters, 33 are endemic. The majority of species (28) are found in temperate waters. Aorids have been reported from the tropics in most parts of the world (Myers, 1975a: 1975b; 1981b; Asari & Myers, 1982; Stephensen, 1948) and 15 species are known from tropical Australia.The aorid genera represented in Australia are Aora (6 species), Archaeolembos (1 species), Australomicrodeutopus (1 species), Bemlos (17 species), Globosolembos (3 species), Grandidierella (5 species), Haplocheira (1 species), Microdeutopus (1 species), Paraorides (1 species), Protolembos (7 species), Wombalano (1 species) and Xenocheira (2 species).

Aorids are found in shallow waters with all but six species recorded from less than 30 metres depth. In these depths they are often associated with sponges, algae, algal turf and the holdfasts of Ecklonia, Macrocystis and Sargassum. In tropical waters aorids are diverse and abundant in coral rubble, oyster shells, on coral reef flats and among mangrove litter.

This study is based on collections held in the Australian Museum, Sydney (AM), the British Musuem (Natural History), London (BMNH), Museum Victoria, Melbourne (NMV) and the Queensland Museum, Brisbane (QM). The following abbreviations are used on the plates: A, antenna; C, coxa; E, epistome; EP, epimeron; G, gnathopod; H, head; MD, mandible; MP, maxilliped; MX, maxilla; OP, outer plate; P, peraeopod; p, palp; T, telson; U, uropod; UR, urosomite.

This publication should be cited as : Lowry, J.K., P.B. Berents & R.T. Springthorpe, 2000. Australian Amphipoda: Aoridae. Version 1: 2 October 2000.