Kazan Federal University, Kazan, Russia


Dual recipient of Best Student Poster Award and Best Student Oral Presentation Award


Sexual dimorphism of appendages in Canthocamptidae (Harpacticoida): role in taxonomy and relationship to sexual arms race [oral presentation]
We know nothing about the stygofauna of microcrustaceans in the European part of Russia: two new genera of Copepoda in only two samples from Tatarstan
[poster with lightning talk]

I started my scientific work in 2017, when I was taken to a project to study plankton in the Lena River Delta (North-Eastern Siberia). My task was to count quantitative samples and study the dynamics of species composition in shallow tundra reservoirs. However, I quickly realized that I didn't really enjoy counting. Around the same time, I first found a species of Bryocamptus, new to science (it has not yet been described). This shocked me and greatly fascinated me. Then I realized that I wanted to do taxonomy.

Thanks to this project and my scientific supervisor Ekaterina Abramova (Lena Delta Reserve), I was able to visit the high-latitude Arctic for the first time. The study of copepods in the Lena River Delta is now my main project. First of all, we study the taxonomy and fauna of the harpacticoids and cyclopoids. As it turned out, the diversity of copepods in the Arctic is greatly underestimated, having already found about 100 species in various fresh and brackish waters. Thus, the Lena River Delta is currently the richest Arctic region in terms of number of species. From here, Dayana Sharafutdinova and I have already described several new species: the freshwater Maraenobiotus supermario, Canthocamptus waldemarschneideri, and the marine Heteropsyllus spiridonovi.

It is the Canthocamptidae that the largest number of new species turned out to belong to, and now we have begun a project to revise the family. This family is remarkable. First, there are about 800 described species. Secondly, its representatives have the widest range of occurrence from the abyssal of the oceans to freshwater and terrestrial biotopes; among them there are even symbiotic species (Pholetiscus). And thirdly, they are distinguished by a variety of morphological characters and sexual dimorphism. So far, we have been able to partially revise two genera, Heteropsyllus and Canthocamptus, from which we have isolated new genera Coullopsyllus and Kikuchicamptus.

We also study copepods living on sponges in the Arctic seas. Here, too, we found a very high diversity and a huge number of new species, including members of the family Canthocamptidae. We have described two so far (Heteropsyllus spongiophilus and Mesopsyllus glacialis), but several more await description. In addition to the main projects, I am involved in several other less significant works, including the study of underground crustaceans of the European part of Russia and the study of the harpacticoids of Lake Baikal.

I was very pleased to win two prizes at once in the competitions of oral presentations and posters. Unfortunately, I do not always have enough diligence to work more efficiently. But receiving these prizes inspired me very much and made me work with renewed vigour. I was also pleased to receive good reviews from well-known specialists, whose work I take as an example for myself. And of course, many thanks to the organizers of the conference for the excellent organization and for the invitation.