Decapod Crustacean Larvae of Scottish Coasts

Data Type: 
Marine Scotland Data Portal

Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science Vol 1 No 11

Identification of decapod crustacean larvae can be a difficult task. These taxa present complex life cycles with the presence of several morphologically different phases. In addition, the different phases will each pass through several morphological stages, although these differ little from each other compared with the differences between phases. Complete larval descriptions are not available for some species (e.g. some species belonging to family Paguridae) or in other cases, the information available is not enough to provide an accurate identification of the specimen; such is the case for Liocarcinus species and other polybiinae larvae. Another source of difficulty is that some bibliographic references necessary to identify decapod larvae are dispersed and sometimes restricted to specific areas or species groups. In addition to this, some species have been ascribed in the past to other species or genera, making it more difficult to compile all the references available for the species of interest.