PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sand Skater 

Heteroserolis tuberculata (Grube, 1875)

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Body outline broad, ovate. Coxal plates of pereonites 2 to 4 separated from tergites by sutures; coxal plates of pereonites 2 to 6 curved, apices acute; posterior coxal plates extended with tips freely projecting. Head with one posterior tubercle. Each pereonite bearing an acute median tubercle and a single transverse row of large irregular tubercles. In the dorsal midline, pereonite 5 may be either: fused completely with pleonite 1; marked posteriorly only by a shallow groove; or completely distinct from pleonite 1. Pleonal tergites each with a median carinate tubercle and a low transverse irregularity either side of the midline, pleonites 2 and 3 wider than pleotelson, margins rounded. Pleotelson broader than long with a median longitudinal carina and, either side of midline, a submarginal ridge and a median transverse ridge which meet as a pronounced tubercle; sometimes a second and third tubercle more posteriorly. Dorsal surface of body bearing short fine setae on the pleotelson, the coxal plates, and along the posterior margins of the tergites. Pleonal sternites with pronounced extensions, that of pleonite 1 extending to apex of that of pleonite 2 and not bearing a longitudinal groove. Antenna 1 extending to pereonite 4. Antenna 2 slender, peduncle not flattened, extending to pereonite 3. Uropodal endopod extending to pleotelsonic rip, apex broadly rounded; exopod two-thirds length of endopod, apex markedly emarginate.

Source: Harrison, K. & Poore, G.C.B. (1984) Serolis (Crustacea, Isopoda, Serolidae) from Australia with a new species from Victoria. Memoirs of the Museum of Victoria, 45, 13-31.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Arthropoda
Subphylum:
Crustacea
Class:
Malacostraca
Subclass:
Eumalacostraca
Superorder:
Peracarida
Order:
Isopoda
Suborder:
Sphaeromatidea
Superfamily:
Seroloidea
Family:
Serolidae
Genus:
Heteroserolis
Species:
tuberculata

General Description

Dorsal surface bearing short fine setae (at least some on pleotelson and coxal plates); uropodal exopod apically emarginate. Pereon and pleon bearing obvious dorsal tuberculation (in addition to the midline). Pleonal sternites 1-3 markedly keeled. Up to 1.5 cm long.

Biology

Sand skaters use their discoid shape and camouflage to swim and walk about invisibly on the surface of sand in marine environments. They feed on the organic matter found in the sand.

Habitat

Intertidal to depth of 82 m.

Reefs

Distribution guide

Southern Australia.

Species Group

Microcrustaceans Isopods

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)
Deep ( > 30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

1.5 cm

Diet

Organic matter

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Recorded in Australia

Species Code

MoV 238

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, Sand Skater, Heteroserolis tuberculata, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 19 Oct 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/5341

Text: creative commons cc by licence