PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sea Centipede 

Paridotea ungulata (Pallas, 1772)

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Body about 4 times as long as wide, smooth, head only slightly narrower than pereonite 1, body more or less parallel-sided. Pleon without articulating pleonites, pleonite 1 indicated ventrolaterally only, sometimes dorsally, pleonites 2 or 2 and 3 indicated by suture laterally only (pleotelsonic formula 1 + 2); pleotelson tapering, apex strongly excavate, pesterolateral corners acute. Antenna 2 multiarticulate. Mandible, maxillae 1 and 2 typical. Maxillipedal endite with apical setation; palp digitiform, 5 articles free. Coxae 2-7 with non-contiguous, non-articulating dorsal coxal plates usually more visible posteriorly. Pereopods with 1-2 spiniform setae on only palm of propodi, sometimes absent on more posterior pereopods, W-shaped ridge between bases of pereopods 7. Penes fused basally, attached to posterior margin of pleonite 1. Oostegites lamellar on pereopods 1-5.

Source: Poore, G.C.B. & Lew Ton, H.M. (1993) Idoteidae of Australia and New Zealand (Crustacea: Isopoda: Valvifera). Invertebrate Taxonomy, 7, 197-278.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Arthropoda
Subphylum:
Crustacea
Class:
Malacostraca
Subclass:
Eumalacostraca
Superorder:
Peracarida
Order:
Isopoda
Suborder:
Valvifera
Family:
Idoteidae
Genus:
Paridotea
Species:
ungulata

General Description

Body about 4 times as long as wide, smooth, head only slightly narrower than pereonite 1, body more or less parallel-sided. Pleotelson tapering, apex strongly excavate, posterolateral corners acute; pleotelsonic formula 1 + 2. Body up to 4.5 cm long.

Biology

Paridotea ungulata is the type species of the genus and the only species of Paridotea found on all southern continents. This species belongs to one of the few families of herbivorous isopods. They can camouflage themselves according to the colour of the marine algae in which they live.

Habitat

On reef platform and intertidal rock pools, to depths of 1 m.

Reefs

Coastal shores

Distribution guide

New Zealand, Solomon Islands, South Africa and Australia.

Species Group

Microcrustaceans Isopods

Depth

Shore (0-1 m)
Shallow (1-30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

4.5 cm

Diet

Herbivore

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Recorded in Australia

Species Code

MoV 3650

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author Taylor, J.

Dr. Jo Taylor is the Sciences Collections Online Coordinator at Museum Victoria.

Author

article author Poore, G.C.B.

Dr. Gary Poore is Principal Curator Emeritus at Museum Victoria.

citation

Cite this page as:
Taylor, J. & Poore, G.C.B., 2011, Sea Centipede, Paridotea ungulata, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 19 Oct 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/5321

Text: creative commons cc by licence