Portal:Crustaceans

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Crustaceans (Subphylum Crustacea) form a very large group of arthropods, which includes such familiar animals as crabs, lobsters, crayfish, shrimp, krill and barnacles. The 50,000 described species range in size from Stygotantulus stocki at 0.1 mm (0.004 in), to the Japanese spider crab with a leg span of up to 14 ft (4.3 m) and a mass of 44 lb (20 kg). Like other arthropods, crustaceans have an exoskeleton, which they moult in order to grow. They are distinguished from other groups of arthropods, such as insects, myriapods and chelicerates by the possession of biramous (two-parted) limbs, and by the nauplius form of the larvae. Most crustaceans are free-living aquatic animals, but some are terrestrial (e.g. woodlice), some are parasitic (e.g. fish lice, tongue worms) and some are sessile (e.g. barnacles). The group has an extensive fossil record, reaching back to the Cambrian, and includes living fossils such as Triops cancriformis, which has existed apparently unchanged since the Triassic period. More than 10 million tons of crustaceans are produced by fishery or farming for human consumption, the majority of it being shrimps and prawns. Krill and copepods are not as widely fished, but may be the animals with the greatest biomass on the planet, and form a vital part of the food chain.

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Illustration of "Cancer capensis" from J. F. W. Herbst's 1792 Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse.
The Cape lobster, Homarinus capensis, is a species of small lobster that lives off the coast of South Africa, from Dassen Island to Haga Haga. Only a few dozen specimens are known, mostly regurgitated by reef-dwelling fish. It lives in rocky reefs, and is thought to lay large eggs that have a short larval phase, or that hatch directly as a juvenile. The species grows to a total length of 10 cm (3.9 in), and resembles a small European or American lobster; it was previously included in the same genus, Homarus, although it is not very closely related to those species, and is now considered to form a separate, monotypic genus – Homarinus. Its closest relatives are the genera Thymops and Thymopides.

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Lepidophthalmus turneranus (Decapoda: Callianassidae)

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The Reverend Thomas Roscoe Rede Stebbing F.R.S., F.L.S. (February 6, 1835 – July 8, 1926) was a British zoologist, who described himself as "a serf to natural history, principally employed about Crustacea".

Having trained as an evangelical Anglican, Stebbing expected to be a staunch opponent of Charles Darwin's recently published theory of evolution by natural selection. Following a critical review of The Descent of Man in The Times in 1871, Stebbing gained prominence by responding in Nature. Stebbing wrote a number of essays on the topic of Darwinism, in which he dissected the argument posited against it, and questioned various aspects of Christianity. His outspoken stance resulted in his being banned from preaching, and he was never offered a parish by the church.

Most of Stebbing's scientific works, comprising more than 110 papers, covered amphipod crustaceans. Stebbing produced a monograph on the amphipods collected on the 1872–1876 expedition by HMS Challenger. He also produced a monograph of the Cumacea, a natural history of the Crustacea, and a biography of the Scottish naturalist and founder of the University Marine Biological Station, Millport, David Robertson. In 1906, Stebbing published the volume on Gammaridea for the series Das Tierreich.

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