Photo Credit: Chao Huang, Hsi-Te Shih, Si Ying Mao via ZooKeys
|Environment||Northern Guangdon, China|
|Reproduction||Sexual; lays eggs|
|Skin Color||Maroon to dark brown, brightens to orange in adulthood|
The Yuebeipotamon calciatile is a species of crab indigenous to the Northern Guangdon in China. With a carapace ranging between maroon to dark brown, they become bright-orange in coloration once they reach adulthood. Their long ambulatory legs range from reddish to purple in hue. The upper shell is hardened, and males have unique thoracic sternal, abdominal, and gonopod characteristics. Primarily found in pools of water within the limestone hill streams of the Northern Guangdon, though they are capable of an amphibious lifestyle.
The genus name for this species of crab is derived from the Chinese spelling system ‘Yue Bei,’ which means ‘northern Guangdong,’ where they originate from. Meanwhile, the suffix ‘Potamon’ refers to the type genus of the family Potamidae, Potamon.”
Y. calciatile was discovered in 2016 within a Northern Guangdon ornamental fish market, where brightly-colored animals are regularly sold for aquariums. The biologists were turned towards the location it was caught in, where they discovered numerous other individuals. While considered to be an incredible discovery, it is also considered to be unsettling as this indicates that unknown species are clearly being sold without regulation in China, and indicates illegal catching that may also greatly harm endangered species.