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Alabama’s Crayfish Species Count Reaches Century Mark: Confirmation of Procambarus barbiger Occurring in Alabama

Rebecca A. Bearden1,*, Amelia C. Grider2, Brian D. Holt3, and Stuart W. McGregor1

1Geological Survey of Alabama, 420 Hackberry Lane, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401. 2Auburn University, Department of Biological Sciences, 120 West Samford Avenue, Auburn University, Auburn, AL 36849. 3Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, State Lands Division, 64 North Union Street, Montgomery, AL 36130. *Corresponding author.

Southeastern Naturalist, Volume 22, Issue 1 (2023): N13–N16

Beginning in 2005, several projects were conducted to update our knowledge of the understudied crayfish fauna in Alabama. Numerous new crayfish records were secured that narrowed collection coverage gaps statewide and boosted records from under-sampled habitat types. The culmination of this work eventually led to publication of the comprehensive book Crayfishes of Alabama. Most of the material secured was identifiable and included numerous new state, drainage, and physiographic records. However, without Form I males, some material could not be verified to species. Specimens of 2 females that resembled Procambarus barbiger (Jackson Prairie Crayfish) were collected during those efforts, 1 each from 2 locations in Sumter County, AL, near the Mississippi state line. That species was unknown in the state at the time and was included in the book as a species that hypothetically could occur in the state. Post-publication, we collected a Form I male incidental to insect trapping at a third Sumter County location that verified the identification, bringing the state total to 100 known species.

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