The pet trade in aquatic animals is known to be one of the main sources of non-native species worldwide. Freshwater decapod crustaceans have increased in popularity as ornamentals in the last two decades. Freshwater crabs of the genus Limnopilos
were discovered by hobby aquarists and introduced on the market in 2008. They are generally considered interesting additions to an aquarium, but information about their living requirements are scarce. Additionally, their invasive potential is not known. Here, we present a survey of the availability of Limnopilos
crabs on the market in Europe and North America and analyzed the invasive potential of all species from the genus based on climate matching from a global perspective. The only species recorded in the pet trade is L
but future introduction of other species is discussed. Certain tropical regions were identified as the most suitable for the potential establishment of Limnopilos
crabs including the northern part of South America, and L
was evaluated as the highest risk species. In this pilot study, we also suggest some points to be answered regarding further improving the risk assessment and also recommend continuous monitoring of the market for ornamental decapods.
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