Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Marine Ornamental Decapods—Popular, Pricey, and Poorly Studied

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
MyBook is a cheap paperback edition of the original book and will be sold at uniform, low price.

Buy this article

$30.00+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites

image of Journal of Crustacean Biology

Abstract The growing demand for highly priced marine ornamental species has contributed to the endangered status of coral reefs. A list of 128 of the most heavily traded marine ornamental decapod crustacean species is tabulated. The development of commercial culture techniques, the knowledge of the larval development, and the association with vertebrate and invertebrate organisms are presented for these species. Forty-nine of the species are caridean shrimp, with the Hippolytidae family alone accounting for 15. Anomuran and brachyuran crabs are the next most traded groups (32 and 27 species, respectively), with the pricey stenopodidean shrimp, Astacidea, and Palinura lobsters being represented by a considerably lower number of species (7, 7 and 6, respectively). The main bottlenecks impairing the commercial culture of ornamental shrimp and lobsters are their long larval development and poor survival rates. The main constraint for the development of culture techniques for hermit and brachyuran crabs is their low commercial value. The ecological impacts of harvesting ornamental species are still poorly studied. Nevertheless, the collection in considerable numbers of hermit and small majid crabs (e.g., Clibanarius and Mithraculus) from tidal areas, fish cleaning shrimp (e.g., Lysmata and Stenopus), and the crown-of-thorns sea star eaters Hymenocera, is likely to have serious impacts on the ecosystem. The cooperation between researchers working on larval biology, population dynamics, ecology, aquaculture, and fisheries is essential to properly manage the collection of marine ornamental decapods.

1. Al-Kholy A. A. 1960 "Larvae of some macruran Crustacea (from the Red Sea)." Publications of the Marine Biology Station of Al Ghardaqa Vol 11 73 85
2. Anger K. 2001 "The biology of decapod crustacean larvae." Pp. 1419 in R. Vonk, ed. The Biology of Decapod Crustacean Larvae. Crustacean Issues. Vol. 14. A. A. Balkema Publishers, Rotterdam, Netherlands
3. Baensch H. , Debelius H. 1994 "Marine Atlas." Vol. 1. Ed. Mergus, Germany. 1215 pp
4. Baisre J. 1994 "Phyllosoma larvae and phylogeny of Palinuroidea (Crustacea: Decapoda): a review." Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 45 925 944
5. Baisre J. , Baisre J. , Alfonso I. 1994 "Later stage larvae of Panulirus guttatus (Latreille, 1804) (Decapoda, Palinuridae) with notes on the identification of phyllosomata of Panulirus in the Caribbean Sea." Crustaceana Vol 66 32 44
6. Bertness M. D. 1981 "The influence of shell type on hermit crab growth rate and clutch size (Decapoda, Anomura)." Crustaceana Vol 40 197 205
7. Blackstone N. W. 1985 "The effects of shell size and shape on growth and form in the hermit crab Pagurus longicarpus." Biological Bulletin Vol 168 75 90
8. Bolker B. M. , St. Mary C. M. , Osenberg C. W. , Schmitt R. J. , Holbrook S. J. 2002 "Management at a different scale: marine ornamentals and local processes." Bulletin of Marine Science Vol 70 733 748
9. Bourdillon-Casanova L. 1960 "Le meroplancton du Golfe de Marseille: les larves des crustacs decapodes." Recueil Des Travaux De La Station Marine D'Endoume Vol 30 1 286
10. Briones-Fourzn P. , McWilliam P. S. 1997 "Puerulus of the spiny lobster Panulirus guttatus (Latreille, 1804) (Palinuridae)." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 48 699 705
11. Brodie R. , Harvey A. W. 2001 "The complete larval development of Coenobita compressus (Crustacea: Decapoda: Coenobitidae), reared in the laboratory." Journal of Crustacean Biology Vol 21 715 732
12. Bruce A. J. 1975 "Les crevettes des rcifs coralliens et leurs colleurs." Endeavour Vol 24 23 27
13. Bruce A. J. 1986 "Observations on the family Gnathophyllidae Dana, 1852 (Crustacea: Decapoda)." Journal of Crustacean Biology Vol 6 463 470
14. Bruckner A. W. 2001 "Tracking the trade in ornamental coral reef organisms: the importance of CITES and its limitations." Aquarium Sciences and Conservation Vol 3 79 94
15. Calado R. , Martins C. , Santos O. , Narciso L. 2001 "Larval development of the Mediterranean cleaner shrimp Lysmata seticaudata (Risso, 1816) (Caridea; Hippolytidae) fed on different diets: costs and benefits of mark-time molting." Larvi'01 Fish and Crustacean Larviculture Symposium, European Aquaculture Society, Special Publication Vol 30 96 99
16. Calado R. , Narciso L. , Morais S. , Rhyne A. L. , Lin J. 2003 "A rearing system for the culture of ornamental decapod crustacean larvae." Aquaculture Vol 218 329 339
17. Caroli E. 1918 "Miersia clavigera Chun, stadio misidiforme di Lysmata seticaudata Risso." Pubblicazione De La Stazione Zoologica Di Napoli II 177 189
18. Côt I. M. 2000 "Evolution and ecology of cleaning symbioses in the sea." Oceanography and Marine Biology: An Annual Review Vol 38 311 355
19. Coutures E. 2001 "On the first phyllosoma stage of Parribacus caledonicus Holthuis, 1960, Scyllarides squamosus (H. Milne-Edwards, 1837) and Arctides regalis Holthuis, 1963 (Crustacea, Decapoda, Scyllaridae) from New Caledonia." Journal of Plankton Research Vol 23 745 751
20. Dakin N. 2001 "The Marine Aquarium Problem Solver." Tetra Press, Virginia. 208 pp
21. Debelius H. 1984 "Armoured Knights of the Sea." Quality Marine, Los Angeles. 120 pp
22. Fenner R. M. 2001 "The Conscientious Marine Aquarium." TFH Publication, New Jersey. 430 pp
23. Fiedler G. C. 1994 "The larval stages of the harlequin shrimp, Hymenocera picta (Dana)." M.S. Thesis, University of Hawaii at Manoa, U.S.A. 101 pp
24. Fletcher D. , Kotter I. , Wunsch M. , Yasir I. 1995 "Preliminary observations on the reproductive biology of ornamental cleaner prawns." International Zoo Yearbook Vol 34 73 77
25. Foss S. A. , Nielsen A. J. 2000 "The Modern Coral Reef Aquarium." Vol. 3. Birgit Schmettkamp Verlag, Bornheim. 448 pp
26. Goldstein B. , Bookhout C. G. 1972 "The larval development of Pagurus prideauxi Leach, 1814, under laboratory conditions (Decapoda Paguridea)." Crustaceana Vol 23 263 281
27. Gore R. 1985 "Molting and growth in decapod larvae." Pp. 165 in A. M. Wenner, ed. Larval Growth. Crustacean Issues. Vol. 2. A. A. Balkema Publishers, Rotterdam, Netherlands
28. Goy J. W. 1990 "Components of reproductive effort and delay of larval metamorphosis in tropical marine shrimp (Crustacea: Decapoda: Caridea and Stenopodidea)." Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Texas, Texas, U.S.A. 177 pp
29. Greve W. 1968 "The planktonkreisel, a new device for culturing zooplankton." Marine Biology Vol 1 201 203
30. Gurney R. 1936 "Larvae of decapod Crustacea. Part I. Stenopidae. Part II. Amphionidae. Part III. Phyllosoma." Discovery Reports Vol 12 377 440
31. Gurney R. 1937 "Larvae of decapod Crustacea. Part IV. Hippolytidae." Discovery Reports Vol 14 351 404
32. Gurney R. , Gurney R. , Lebour M. V. 1941 "On the larvae of certain Crustacea Macrura, mainly from Bermuda." Journal of the Linnean Society of London (Zoology) Vol 41 89 181
33. Harms J. 1992 "Larval development and delayed metamorphosis in the hermit crab Clibanarius erythropus (Latreille) (Crustacea, Diogenidae)." Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology Vol 156 151 160
34. Harvey A. W. 1996 "Delayed metamorphosis in Florida hermit crabs: multiple cues and constraints (Crustacea: Decapoda: Paguridae and Diogenidae)." Marine Ecology: Progress Series Vol 141 27 36
35. Illingworth J. , Tong L. , Moss G. , Pickering T. 1997 "Upwelling tank for culturing rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) phyllosomas." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 48 911 914
36. Ingle R. W. 1982 "Larval and post-larval development of the slender legged spider crab, Macropodia rostrata (Linnaeus) (Oxyrhyncha: Majidae: Inachinae), reared in the laboratory." Bulletin of the British Museum of Natural History (Zoology) Vol 42 207 225
37. Ingle R. W. 1991 "Larval Stages of Northeastern Atlantic Crabs. An Illustrated Key." Chapman and Hall, London. 363 pp
38. Johnson M. W. 1971 "On palinurid and scyllarid lobster larvae and their distribution in the South China Sea (Decapoda, Palinuridae)." Crustaceana Vol 21 247 282
39. Johnson M. W. , Robertson P. B. 1970 "On the phyllosoma larvae of the genus Justitia (Decapoda, Palinuridae)." Crustaceana Vol 18 283 292
40. Jonasson M. 1987 "Fish cleaning behaviour of shrimp." Journal of Zoology, London Vol 213 117 131
41. Jones R. J. , Steven A. L. 1997 "Effect of cyanide in relation to cyanide fishing on reefs." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 48 517 522
42. Karplus I. , Szlep R. , Tsurnamal M. 1972 "Associative behaviour of the fish Cryptocentrus cryptocentrus (Gobiidae) and the pistol shrimp Alpheus djiboutensis (Alpheidae) in artificial burrows." Marine Biology Vol 15 95 104
43. Kittaka J. 1997a "Culture of larval spiny lobsters: a review of work done in northern Japan." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 48 923 930
44. Kittaka J. 1997b "Application of ecosystem method for complete development of phyllosomas of spiny lobster." Aquaculture Vol 155 319 331
45. Knowlton R. E. 1973 "Larval development of the snapping shrimp Alpheus heterochelis Say, reared in the laboratory." Journal of Natural History Vol 7 273 306
46. Kulbicki M. , Arnal C. 1999 "Cleaning of fish ectoparasites by a Palaemonidae shrimp on soft bottoms in New Caledonia." Cybium Vol 23 101 104
47. Kurata H. 1970 "Studies on the life histories of decapod Crustacea of Georgia." Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Georgia, Sapelo Island, Georgia, U.S.A. 274 pp
48. Larkin S. L. , Adams C. M. , Degner R. L. , Lee D. J. , Milon J. W. 2001 "An economic profile of Florida's marine life industry." Florida Sea Grant Technical Paper Vol 113 1 63
49. Le Roux A. 1966 "Contribution a l'tude du dveloppement larvaire de Clibanarius erythropus (Latreille) (Crustac Decapode Anomure Diognid)." Cahiers De Biologie Marine Vol 7 225 230
50. Lebour M. V. 1928 "The larval stages of the Plymouth Brachyura." Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 473560
51. Lebour M. V. 1932 "The larval stages of the Plymouth Caridea. IV. The Alpheidae." Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 463469
52. Lin J. 2000 "Errata." Journal of the World Aquaculture Society Vol 31 476
53. Losey G. Jr. 1972 "The ecological importance of cleaning symbiosis." Copeia 4:820833
54. Lukhaup C. 2002 "Shells & pincers." Tropical Fish Hobbyist Vol 51 90 94
55. Lyons W. G. , Hunt J. H. 1997 "The puerulus of the spotted spiny lobster, Panulirus guttatus (Latreille 1804) (Crustacea: Decapoda)." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 48 491 495
56. Martin J. W. , Davis G. E. 2001 "An updated classification of the Recent Crustacea." Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Science Series Vol 39 1 124
57. Michel A. 1971 "Note sur les puerulus de Palinuridae et les larves phyllosomes de Panulirus homarus (L.). Clef de dtermination des larves phyllosomes rcoltêes dans le Pacifique quatorial et sud-tropical (dcapodes)." Cahiers O.R.S.T.O.M, Srie Ocnagraphie Vol 9 459 473
58. Paula J. , Cartaxana A. 1991 "Complete larval development of the spider crab Stenorhynchus lanceolatus (Brull, 1837) (Decapoda, Brachyura, Majidae), reared in the laboratory." Crustaceana Vol 60 113 122
59. Paula J. , Paula J. , Hartnoll R. G. 1989 "The larval and post-larval development of Percnon gibbesi (Crustacea, Brachyura, Grapsidae) and the identity of the larval genus Pluteocaris." Journal of Zoology, London Vol 218 17 37
60. Pike R. , Williamson D. I. 1960 "Larvae of decapod Crustacea of the families Diogenidae and Paguridae from the Bay of Naples." Pubblicazione De La Stazione Zoologica Di Napoli Vol 21 493 552
61. Provenzano A. J. Jr. 1962a "The larval development of the tropical land hermit Coenobita clypeatus (Herbst) in the laboratory." Crustaceana Vol 4 207 228
62. Provenzano A. J. 1962b "The larval development of Calcinus tibicen (Herbst) (Crustacea, Anomura) in the laboratory." Biological Bulletin Vol 123 179 202
63. Provenzano A. J. 1968 "The complete larval development of the West Indian hermit crab Petrochirus diogenes (L.) (Decapoda, Diogenidae) reared in the laboratory." Bulletin of Marine Science Vol 18 143 181
64. Provenzano A. J. 1985 "Commercial culture of decapod crustaceans." Pp. 269314 in A. J. Provenzano, Jr. ed. Economic Aspects: Fisheries and Culture. The Biology of Crustacea. Vol. 10. Academic Press, New York
65. Rice L. A. , Provenzano A. J. Jr. 1966 "The larval development of the West Indian sponge crab Dromidia antillensis (Decapoda: Dromiidae)." Journal of Zoology, London Vol 149 297 319
66. Rice L. A. , Rice L. A. , Ingle R. W. , Allen E. 1970 "The larval development of the sponge crab Dromia personata (L.) (Crustacea, Decapoda, Brachyura) reared in the laboratory." Vie et Milieu Vol 21 223 240
67. Ritar A. J. 2001 "The experimental culture of phyllosoma larvae of southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) in a flow-through system." Aquacultural Engineering Vol 24 149 156
68. Robertson P. B. 1969 "Phyllosoma larvae of a palinurid lobster, Justitia longimana (H. Milne Edwards), from the Western Atlantic." Bulletin of Marine Science Vol 19 922 944
69. Rodrguez A. 1997 "Larval and postlarval development of Pisa tetraodon (Pennant, 1777) (Decapoda, Majidea) reared in the laboratory." Journal of Plankton Research Vol 19 29 41
70. Sankolli K. , Kewalramani H. G. 1962 "Larval development of Saron marmoratus (Olivier) in the laboratory." Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India Vol 4 106 120
71. Seridji R. 1990 "Description of some planktonic larval stages of Stenopus spinosus Risso, 1826: notes on the genus and systematic position of the Stenopodidea as revealed by larval characters." Scientia Marina Vol 54 293 303
72. Sims H. W. Jr. 1966 "The phyllosoma larvae of the spiny lobster Palinurellus gundlachi Von Martens (Decapoda, Palinuridae)." Crustaceana Vol 11 205 215
73. Spotte S. 1998 "Cleaner shrimps?." Helgolander Meeresunters Vol 52 59 64
74. Sprung J. 2001 "Oceanographic Series." Invertebrates, A Quick Reference Guide. Ricordea Publishing, Florida. 240 pp
75. Talbot F. H. , Talbot M. S. 1971 "L'toile de mer Couronne d'pines (Acanthaster) et les rcifs de la Grande Barrire." Endeavour Vol 30 38 42
76. Tlusty M. 2002 "The benefits and risks of aquacultural production for the aquarium trade." Aquaculture Vol 205 203 219
77. Tunberg B. G. , Creswell R. L. 1988 "Early growth and mortality of the Caribbean king crab Mithrax spinosissimus reared in the laboratory." Marine Biology Vol 98 337 343
78. Williamson D. I. 1967 "Some recent advances and outstanding problems in the study of the larval Crustacea." Proceedings of the Symposium on CrustaceaPart II: 815823
79. Williamson D. I. , Williamson D. I. , Rice A. 1996 "Larval evolution in the Crustacea." Crustaceana Vol 69 267 287
80. Wilson K. A. , Scotto L. E. , Gore R. H. 1979 "Studies on decapod Crustacea from the Indian River region of Florida. XIII. Larval development under laboratory conditions of the spider crab Mithrax forceps (A. Milne-Edwards, 1875) (Brachyura: Majidae)." Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington Vol 92 307 327
81. Wood E. 2001 "Global advances in conservation and mangement of marine ornamental resources." Aquarium Sciences and Conservation Vol 3 65 77
82. Worcester S. E. , Gaines S. D. 1997 "Quantifying hermit crab recuitment rates and megalopal shell selection on a wave-swept shore." Marine Ecology: Progress Series Vol 157 307 310
83. Wunsch M. 1996 "Larval Development of Lysmata amboinensis (De Man, 1888) (Decapoda: Hippolytidae) reared in the laboratory with a note on L. debelius (Bruce, 1983)." M.S. Thesis, University of Wales, Bangor, U.K. 110 pp
84. Yanagisawa Y. 1984 "Studies on the interspecific relationship between gobbid fish and snapping shrimp. II. Life history and pair formation of snapping shrimp Alpheus bellulus." Publications of the Seto Marine Biological Laboratory Vol 29 93 116
85. Yang H. J. , Kim C. H. 1999 "The early zoeal stages of Alpheus heeia Banner & Banner, 1975 reared in the laboratory (Decapoda, Caridea, Alpheidae)." Crustaceana Vol 72 25 36
86. Yang W. T. 1976 "Studies on the western Atlantic arrow crab genus Stenorhynchus (Decapoa, Brachyura, Majidae). I. Larval characters of two species and comparison with other larvae of Inachinae." Crustaceana Vol 31 157 177
87. Zhang D. , Lin J. , Creswell R. L. 1997 "Larviculture and effect of food on larval survival and development in golden coral shrimp Stenopus scutellatus." Journal of Shellfish Research Vol 16 367 369
88. Zhang D. , Lin J. , Creswell R. L. 1998a "Effects of food and temperature on survival and development in the peppermint shrimp Lysmata wurdemanni." Journal of the World Aquaculture Society Vol 29 471 476
89. Zhang D. , Lin J. , Creswell R. L. 1998b "Mating behavior and spawning of the banded coral shrimp Stenopus hispidus in the laboratory." Journal of Crustacean Biology Vol 18 511 518

Article metrics loading...


Affiliations: 1: (RC, LN) Laboratório Marítimo da Guia—Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa, Departamento de Biologia Animal, Estrada do Guincho, 2750-642 Cascais, Portugal (;; (JL, ALR) Department of Biological Sciences, Florida Institute of Technology, 150 W. University Boulevard, Melbourne, Florida 32901, U.S.A. (;; (RA) Estação de Biologia Marinha do Funchal, Cais do Carvão, Promenade da Orla Marítima do Funchal, Gorgulho, 9000-107 Funchal, Madeira, Portugal ( (corresponding author (RC):


Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Journal of Crustacean Biology — Recommend this title to your library

    Thank you

    Your recommendation has been sent to your librarian.

  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation