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Redescription of two rare copepod species (Crustacea: Cyclopoida) from the Congo River Basin (Africa)

Grant number: 23/03274-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2023
Effective date (End): May 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Gilmar Perbiche Neves
Grantee:Ruan Tiago Jolo
Host Institution: Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde (CCBS). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The present project aims to redescribe two rare species of copepods from the Congo River basin in Africa: Afrocyclops pauliani Lindberg, 1951 listed as extinct by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and Cryptocyclops falsus (Kiefer, 1929), also found by a few works. The descriptions are old, little morphologically detailed and have few illustrations, and the present project aims to redescribe both species to contribute to a better identification of inland water copepods on the African continent. The Congo River is the second largest river in Africa, however work on zooplankton is still scarce. Samples were collected between 2010 and 2015 in 04 campaigns, two in high water and two in low water, ranging from 35 to 56 sampling points in each campaign. Three collections covered a longitudinal gradient of 1700km between Kisangani and Kinshasa, in the main Congo channel and the mouth of the main tributaries, and one collection covered 700km of the Kasai River and the mouth of the main tributaries. The specimens to be analyzed in this project were obtained from 12 samples out of a total of 135. The specimens will be analyzed under stereoscopes and microscopes, and illustrations will be made in camera lucida, digital photographs and scanning microscopy, for better characterization of the morphological structures. The nomenclature of Huys & Boxshall (1991), Ueda & Reid (2003) and Gutiérrez-Aguirre & Suárez-Morales (2020) will follow. Paratypes will be deposited in museums in Brazil and abroad.

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