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Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science Reports

Formal report series, containing results of research and monitoring carried out by Marine Scotland Science


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Decapod Crustacean Larvae of Scottish Coasts

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.

Maria Pan, Steve Hay. 2010. Decapod Crustacean Larvae of Scottish Coasts. Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science Volume 1 No 11. Edinburgh: Scottish Government, 103 pages. doi: 10.7489/1480-1
Release Date
Spatial / Geographical Coverage Location
Scottish Coasts
Temporal Coverage
2010-01-01 to 2010-12-31
UK Open Government Licence (OGL)
Maria Pan, Steve Hay
Data Dictionary

The main aim of this manual is to provide a photographic identification guide for the species most frequently found in Scottish coastal waters, with the exception of infraorder Brachyura. It represents a valuable resource for workers in the future and provides an overview of the decapod species present in the meroplankton and their seasonal abundance in this area.

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Marine Scotland Science Enquiries
Contact Email
Public Access Level