Crustacea, the Higher Taxa

J.K. Lowry


Dendrobranchiata (Decapoda, Eucarida, Malacostraca)

Common name. Prawns.

Description. Head. Rostrum present; eyes stalked; compound, visual elements present; ocular scale absent; naupliar eyes absent. Antennules (antenna 1) biramous; peduncle and flagellum distinct; endopod well developed; exopod well developed, whip-like. Antennae (antenna 2) biramous; exopod forming a scaphocerite. Mandible uniramous; palp present. Maxillipeds, 3 pairs; biramous. Thorax. Carapace present, univalved, enclosing head and thorax, laterally compressed or subcylindrical to cylindrical, smooth or with spines. Sternum undivided (check). Thorax and abdomen differentiated. Peraeopods (legs) 5 pairs; biramous, or uniramous; non-phyllopodous; differentiated (some prehensile). Peraeopod 1 (leg 1) chelate. Peraeopod 2 (leg 2) chelate. Peraeopod 3 (leg 3) chelate. Peraeopod 5 (leg 5) well developed. Abdomen with 6 somites. Epimera present. Pleopods present, 5 pairs; well developed, narrow and rounded; pleopod 1 forming a gonopod (eg. petasma) in males, or 1 and 2 forming reproductive organ in males. Uropods well developed, 1 pair, positioned ventrolaterally; rami present, exopod without diaresis; endopod without statocyst. Telson present (not fused to pleon).

Larval development. Metamorphic. Eggs shed or deposited externally.

Habitat. Marine, brackish, freshwater; usually benthic.

Distribution. Worldwide.

Cite this publication as: Lowry, J.K. (1999 onwards). 'Crustacea, the Higher Taxa: Description, Identification, and Information Retrieval.' Version: 2 October 1999. http://crustacea.net/.