Upogebiidae mud shrimps are important organisms in soft-bottom communities, where they dig burrows acting as ecosystem engineers. The present study describes some parameters of the population structure and the reproductive biology of the mud shrimp Upogebia omissa. The mud shrimps were sampled in the Vaza-Barris estuarine river, Sergipe State, northeastern Brazil. In laboratory, specimens were sexed and measured for carapace length (CL). Ovigerous females had their total eggs counted. The body size ranged between 3.0 and 12.9 mm CL. Males were significantly smaller than females. The overall sex ratio was 0.34, female-biased (binomial test, P = 0.001). Fecundity ranged from 240 to 2339 eggs per female, and it was significantly affected by the bodysize. The sexual dimorphism evidenced by the mean size of each sex is a common pattern in decapods that incubate eggs, and in that case, fecundity normally varies in function of body size. Finally, we suggest that additional studies are needed, given the ecological importance of these mud shrimps and the scarcity of studies about them.
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