Invasion History

First Non-native North American Tidal Record: 1983
First Non-native West Coast Tidal Record: 1983
First Non-native East/Gulf Coast Tidal Record:

General Invasion History:

The gammarid amphipod Gammarus daiberi was described by E. L. Bousfield in 1969, based on specimens collected in Delaware Bay, Chesapeake Bay, and estuaries of South Carolina (Bousfield 1969; Bousfield 1973). This species occurs in tidal fresh and brackish estuaries, most commonly at salinities of 1-5 PSU, occasionally to 15 PSU (Bousfield 1973). Its range was given as' Delaware and Chesapeake estuarine systems, possibly occurring via canals to the Hudson and Long Island Sound' (Bousfield 1973). On the basis of this statement, G. daiberi has been listed as an introduced species in the Hudson River (Mills et al. 1997) and Long Island Sound (Connecticut Sea Grant 2005). However, details supporting this statement have not been given, and we regard this species as cryptogenic in the Hudson estuary and Long Island Sound. However, G. daiberi is definitely introduced in the San Francisco estuary, California where it was first collected in the central Delta in 1983 (Cohen and Carlton 1995). It occurs as far seaward as Martinez, but is most abundant in the fresh-brackish transition zone (Cohen and Carlton 1995; Lee et al. 2003; Peterson and Vayssieres 2010; Barnett et al. 2011).

North American Invasion History:

Invasion History on the West Coast:

On the West Coast, Gammarus daiberi is known only from the inner reaches of the San Francisco Bay estuary, where it occurs from Martinez, on the Carquinez Strait, through Suisun Bay to Buckley Cove, Stockton, in the Delta (Cohen and Carlton 1995; Lee et al. 2003; Peterson and Vayssieres 2010). In 2004 it was found in the Napa River, upstream from San Pablo Bay (Cohen et al. 2005). It was very abundant among growths of introduced Water Hyacinth (Eichornia crassipes) and native Water Pennywort (Hydrocotyle umbellata) in the central and western Delta (Toft et al. 2003).

Gammarus daiberi was collected and identified in the ballast water of oil tankers arriving in Prince William Sound, Alaska (Chapman, in Hines and Ruiz 2000), so this species has the potential to invade other West Coast estuaries.


Description

Gammarus daiberi has a short rostrum. The eye is kidney-shaped and purplish brown (in preservative). Antennae 1 and 2 are roughly equal. Antenna 1 has a prominent accessory flagellum with 4 or more segments. The basal segments of the flagellum have alternate posterior setae more than twice the width of the segment. The distal segments (4-5) of the peduncle of Antenna 2 have 4-7 clusters of long, stiff setae, with 5-6 per cluster. In males, the flagellum of antenna 2 bears long, curly setae.

Gnathopod 2 is large than Gnathopod 1. The palms of the gnathopods are oblique and the dactyls are slender. Coxal plates 1-4 bear moderately stiff setae on the anterior-ventral and posterior-ventral edge, but the ventral edge lacks setae. The hind margins of the abdominal side plates end in a slightly produced, acute angle. The urosome segments have paired clusters of lateral spines. The two rami of Uropod 3 are roughly equal in length. The telson consists of 2 rami, each of which bear 2 lateral bundles of spines. Males are 8-12 mm and females are 6-8 mm in size. Description based on: Bousfield 1969, Bousfield 1973, Chapman 2007, and Barnett et al. 2011.


Taxonomy

Taxonomic Tree

Kingdom:   Animalia
Phylum:   Arthropoda
Subphylum:   Crustacea
Class:   Malacostraca
Subclass:   Eumalacostraca
Superorder:   Peracarida
Order:   Amphipoda
Suborder:   Gammaridea
Family:   Gammaridae
Genus:   Gammarus
Species:   daiberi

Synonyms

Gammarus annulatus (Wass, 1965)
Gammarus fasciatus (Cronin et al, 1962)
Gammarus tigrinus (Bousfield, 1958)

Potentially Misidentified Species

Gammarus annulatus
Wass 1965, Virginia, misidentification (Bousfield 1969)

Gammarus fasciatus
Cronin et al. 1965, Delaware River, freshwater, misidentification (Bousfield 1969)

Gammarus lacustris
Native to interior waters of northern North America, rare in West Coast tidal rivers (Chapman 2007).

Gammarus tigrinus
Gammarus tigrinus is native from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Florida, being found in estuaries and coastal fresh water. It is introduced to northern Europe, including the Baltic Sea, the Great Lakes, and the upper Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, and is regarded as a potential invader of West Coast estuaries (Bousfield 1973; Grigorovich et al. 2005; Chapman 2007; Grigorovich et al. 2008).

Ecology

General:

Gammarus daiberi is an amphipod characteristic of brackish marshes and estuaries (Bousfield, 1969; Bousfield, 1973). Sexes are separate, the young are brooded, and development is direct (Bousfield 1973). In this species, males (8-12 mm) are larger than females (6-8 mm). In the mid-Atlantic region (Hudson River-Chesapeake Bay), the life cycle is reportedly annual, with females bearing eggs in March-October and several broods per female (Bousfield 1973). Details of growth and reproduction of G. daiberi have not been studied, but are probably similar to those of the related species G. tigrinus, widespread on the East coast of North America and introduced to Europe (Bousfield 1973).

Gammarus daiberi tolerates a wide temperature range, from near freezing to above 30C (Nauman and Cory 1969; Bousfield 1973). It ranges extensively into tidal fresh waters (Toft et al. 2003; Graening et al. 2012), but we have no records from nontidal lakes or rivers. This amphipod is most abundant at salinities from 1-5 PSU, but has been collected at salinities as high as 15 PSU (Bousfield 1973). In the San Francisco estuary, it ranges throughout the Delta to San Pablo Bay, and is more abundant in wet years (Lee et al. 2003; Peterson and Vayssieres 2010; Graening et al. 2012). Gammarus daiberi appears to be attracted to sheltered habitats, including colonies of the hydroid Garveia sp. (Feeley and Wass 1971), beds of the submerged plant Myriophyllum spicatum (Menzie 1980), and floating plants (Water Hyacinth- Eichornia crassipes and Pennywort- Hydrocotyle umbellata) (Toft et al. 2003). Gammarus sp. are omnivores, feeding on algae, aquatic plants, and occasional invertebrates (Barnes 1983), including midge larvae (Chironomidae) (Menzie 1980). Gammarid amphipods, dominated by G. daiberi, are a major food source for native and introduced fishes in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Feyrer et al. 2003; Grimaldo et al. 2009).

Food:

Vegetation, detritus, invertebrates, insect larve

Consumers:

Fishes, shrimps

Trophic Status:

Omnivore

Omni

Habitats

General HabitatGrass BedNone
General HabitatCoarse Woody DebrisNone
General HabitatUnstructured BottomNone
General HabitatMarinas & DocksNone
General HabitatSalt-brackish marshNone
Salinity RangeLimnetic0-0.5 PSU
Salinity RangeOligohaline0.5-5 PSU
Salinity RangeMesohaline5-18 PSU
Tidal RangeSubtidalNone
Vertical HabitatEpibenthicNone
Vertical HabitatNektonicNone


Tolerances and Life History Parameters

Minimum Temperature (ºC)0Based on geographical range
Maximum Temperature (ºC)32Field, average temperature in thermal effluent, in June, when G. daiberi was present (Nauman and Cory 1969).
Minimum Salinity (‰)0Field data (Bousfield 1973)
Maximum Salinity (‰)15Field data (Bousfield 1973)
Minimum Length (mm)6Adult females (Bousfield 1973)
Maximum Length (mm)12.5Adult males range from 8 to 12.5 mm. Females are 6-8 mm (Bousfield 1969)
Broad Temperature RangeNoneCold temperate-Warm temperate
Broad Salinity RangeNoneTidal Limnetic-Mesohaline

General Impacts

Ecological Impacts

The gammarid amphipod Gammarus daiberi was first identified in the San Francisco Estuary in 1983, and after the invasion of the Asian Brackish-water Clam (Corbula amurensis), it became one of the dominant crustaceans in the Delta region (Peterson and Vaysierres 2010). It is now one of the major prey items for fish in the Delta (Nobriga and Feyrer 2007; Grimaldo et al. 2009).

Food/Prey- After the invasion of Corbula amurensis drastically altered planktonic foodwebs in the Delta, gammarid amphipods, probably dominated by G. daiberi replaced native mysids (Neomysis mercedis) as a crustacean food for fishes (Feyrer et al. 2003; Nobriga and Feyrer 2007). Gammarid amphipods were not present in the diet of juvenile Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) in the San Francisco estuary in 1963-64, but were found in 34-43% of fish sampled in 2001 and 2003. The comparatively large size of these prey compared to other invertebrates suggests that the invasion had a significant impact on the diet of young Striped Bass (Nobriga and Feyrer 2007). Stable isotope analyses indicate that gammarid amphipods are now a major component of the diet of many fishes, providing at least 50% of the muscle carbon of five species of introduced fishes (Redear Sunfish- Lepomis microlophus; Largemouth Bass- Micropterus salmoides; Black Crappie- Pomoxis nigromaculatus; Yellowfin Goby- Acanthogobius flavimanus; Shimofuri Goby- Tridentiger bifasciatus) and 2 native fishes (Prickly Sculpin- Cottus asper and Splittail- Pogonichthys macrolepidotus) (Grimaldo et al. 2009). The shift in available food from mysids to amphipods may partially account for the increasing abundance of introduced centrarchids (Grimaldo et al. 2009).

Regional Impacts

P090San Francisco BayEcological ImpactFood/Prey
Gammarid amphipods, probably dominated by G. daiberi were not present in the diet of juvenile Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) in the San Francisco estuary in 1963-64, but were found in 34-43% of fish sampled in 2001 and 2003. The comparatively large size of thse prey compared to other invertebrates suggests that the invasion had a significant impact on the diet of young Striped Bass (Nobriga and Feyrer 2007). Stable isotope analyses indicate that gammarid amphipods are a major component of the diet of many fishes, providing at least 50% of the muscle carbon of 5 species of introduced fishes and 2 native fishes (Grimaldo et al. 2009).
NEP-VNorthern California to Mid Channel IslandsEcological ImpactFood/Prey
Gammarid amphipods, probably dominated by G. daiberi were not present in the diet of juvenile Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) in the San Francisco estuary in 1963-64, but were found in 34-43% of fish sampled in 2001 and 2003. The comparatively large size of these prey compared to other invertebrates suggests that the invasion had a significant impact on the diet of young Striped Bass (Nobriga and Feyrer 2007). Stable isotope analyses indicate that gammarid amphipods are a major component of the diet of many fishes, providing at least 50% of the muscle carbon of 5 species of introduced fishes and 2 native fishes (Grimaldo et al. 2009).

Regional Distribution Map

Bioregion Region Name Year Invasion Status Population Status
NA-ET3 Cape Cod to Cape Hatteras 0 Native Estab
CAR-VII Cape Hatteras to Mid-East Florida 0 Native Estab
NEP-V Northern California to Mid Channel Islands 1983 Def Estab
M040 Long Island Sound 1969 Crypto Estab
M060 Hudson River/Raritan Bay 1969 Crypto Estab
P090 San Francisco Bay 1983 Def Estab
P093 _CDA_P093 (San Pablo Bay) 2004 Def Estab

Occurrence Map

OCC_ID Author Year Date Locality Status Latitude Longitude
767937 Ruiz et al., 2015 2011 2011-09-26 Pittsburg Marina, San Francisco Bay, CA, California, USA Def 38.0346 -121.8829
768045 Ruiz et al., 2015 2012 2012-08-31 Antioch Marina, San Francisco Bay, CA, California, USA Def 38.0203 -121.8211
768212 Ruiz et al., 2015 2012 2012-09-10 Pittsburg Marina, San Francisco Bay, CA, California, USA Def 38.0346 -121.8829
768258 Ruiz et al., 2015 2012 2012-09-13 Port of Stockton, San Francisco Bay, CA, California, USA Def 37.9589 -121.3609

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