Skeleton shrimps (family Caprellidae) are highly specialized members of the order Amphipoda. Some body parts have been completely lost and behaviour has changed accordingly, or the other way around. Superficially they look like a marine praying mantis. Their long and thin body clings to the substrate with the hind legs and the claws of the chelipeds at the front end are used to capture prey. The three pleosome segments, used for swimming in other amphipods, are absent, as well as the three urosome segments, originally used for thrusting or steering. Caprellids are prominent members of fouling communities in coastal waters, often occurring in high densities. Due to their lifestyle they have a high propensity to be carried elsewhere on ship’s hulls.

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Nederlandse Faunistische Mededelingen

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EIS Kenniscentrum Insecten en andere ongewervelden

M.A. Faasse. (2017). The first record of the skeleton shrimp Caprella scaura in Northwestern Europe (Crustacea: Amphipoda). Nederlandse Faunistische Mededelingen, 48, 75–78.

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