- Aquatic Biomes
- lakes and ponds
- temporary pools
- Average depth
- 1.2 m
- 3.94 ft
- Sexual Dimorphism
- male larger
- sexes shaped differently
- Range length
- 10 to 40 mm
- 0.39 to 1.57 in
A female keeps her eggs in the egg sac for several hours after fertilization. If conditions are favorable, the female then lays the eggs/cysts, which tend to be white, on various substrates present in the pool. If conditions are not favorable, the female will modify the eggs so that they enter a state of dormancy, and will not hatch until conditions improve. In either case, the first larval stage post-hatching is the metanauplius. In this early stage, they are orange in color and possesses three pairs of limbs and a single eye. Several hours later, they shed their exoskeleton and the telson begins to form. At this stage, the larvae are considered planktonic. After another 15 hours, the larva sheds its exoskeleton again and begins to resemble a miniature adult. The juvenile will continue to molt and grow to its full adult size within the next several days. After a total of seven days, the crustacean turns a brownish color, and it can lay its own eggs because it has reached full sexual maturity. Like many tadpole shrimp, growth is strongly dependent on density and will be slowed at high densities. (Erickson and Brown, 1980; Fry, et al., 1994)
- Development - Life Cycle
- Key Reproductive Features
- seasonal breeding
- gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate)
- simultaneous hermaphrodite
- Breeding season
- Mating takes place from spring to summer.
- Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female)
- 7 days
- Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male)
- 7 days
The female likely provides provisioning in her eggs, which she lays on various substrates or in the water column and then departs. There are no further interactions. (Sassaman, et al., 1997)
- Parental Investment
- Typical lifespan
- 40 to 70 days
- Typical lifespan
- Typical lifespan
- 70 to 90 days
- Typical lifespan
Communication and Perception
- Communication Channels
This species of tadpole shrimp is omnivorous. Individuals tend to prefer animal detritus over plant detritus but will eat both if available on the pool floor. Insect larvae as well as various zooplankton are also common prey items for (Erickson and Brown, 1980; Fryer, 1988). These tadpole shrimp seem to show a preference toward eating mosquito larvae over other insect larvae. In times when food is scarce, some individuals will resort to cannibalizing juvenile tadpole shrimp or use their thoracic appendages to filter food toward their mouth. is especially adept at chewing off the roots and leaves of seedling plants such as rice plants.
- Primary Diet
- Animal Foods
- aquatic crustaceans
- Plant Foods
- roots and tubers
- Other Foods
- Foraging Behavior
Many species of bird, particularly water fowl, feed on Lithobates sylvaticus, have been known to prey on . In times when food is scarce, these crustaceans may resort to cannibalism. To decrease predation, tadpole shrimp tend to be solitary, making themselves smaller targets and less noticeable than a large group would be. Their brown coloration also functions as camouflage, blending into the sediment at the bottom of their pools. (Fry, et al., 1994; Fryer, 1988; Scholnick, 1995), both eggs and adults. Also, wood frogs,
- Anti-predator Adaptations
These small crustaceans are a major source of food for water fowl. Certain parasitic bacteria of the genus Echinostoma have been known to use as a host organism. Also, more food is provided for filter feeders as a result of this crustacean's constant digging in the pond substrate which stirs up the sediment. These tadpole shrimp have been known to greatly reduce the population sizes of mosquitoes, such as Culex quinquefasciatus, by consuming their larvae. (Fry, et al., 1994)
- Echinostoma sp.
Economic Importance for Humans: Positive
- Positive Impacts
- controls pest population
Economic Importance for Humans: Negative
There are no known adverse effects ofon humans.
has no special conservation status.
Eric Hasbun (author), The College of New Jersey, Keith Pecor (editor), The College of New Jersey, Angela Miner (editor), Animal Diversity Web Staff.
living in the Nearctic biogeographic province, the northern part of the New World. This includes Greenland, the Canadian Arctic islands, and all of the North American as far south as the highlands of central Mexico.
living in the southern part of the New World. In other words, Central and South America.
reproduction that is not sexual; that is, reproduction that does not include recombining the genotypes of two parents
Referring to an animal that lives on or near the bottom of a body of water. Also an aquatic biome consisting of the ocean bottom below the pelagic and coastal zones. Bottom habitats in the very deepest oceans (below 9000 m) are sometimes referred to as the abyssal zone. see also oceanic vent.
- bilateral symmetry
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
having markings, coloration, shapes, or other features that cause an animal to be camouflaged in its natural environment; being difficult to see or otherwise detect.
particles of organic material from dead and decomposing organisms. Detritus is the result of the activity of decomposers (organisms that decompose organic material).
- active during the day, 2. lasting for one day.
animals which must use heat acquired from the environment and behavioral adaptations to regulate body temperature
- external fertilization
fertilization takes place outside the female's body
union of egg and spermatozoan
a method of feeding where small food particles are filtered from the surrounding water by various mechanisms. Used mainly by aquatic invertebrates, especially plankton, but also by baleen whales.
mainly lives in water that is not salty.
having a body temperature that fluctuates with that of the immediate environment; having no mechanism or a poorly developed mechanism for regulating internal body temperature.
referring to animal species that have been transported to and established populations in regions outside of their natural range, usually through human action.
A large change in the shape or structure of an animal that happens as the animal grows. In insects, "incomplete metamorphosis" is when young animals are similar to adults and change gradually into the adult form, and "complete metamorphosis" is when there is a profound change between larval and adult forms. Butterflies have complete metamorphosis, grasshoppers have incomplete metamorphosis.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
specialized for swimming
- native range
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
an animal that mainly eats all kinds of things, including plants and animals
found in the oriental region of the world. In other words, India and southeast Asia.
reproduction in which eggs are released by the female; development of offspring occurs outside the mother's body.
development takes place in an unfertilized egg
photosynthetic or plant constituent of plankton; mainly unicellular algae. (Compare to zooplankton.)
- seasonal breeding
breeding is confined to a particular season
remains in the same area
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
that region of the Earth between 23.5 degrees North and 60 degrees North (between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle) and between 23.5 degrees South and 60 degrees South (between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle).
the region of the earth that surrounds the equator, from 23.5 degrees north to 23.5 degrees south.
uses sight to communicate
animal constituent of plankton; mainly small crustaceans and fish larvae. (Compare to phytoplankton.)
Erickson, C., R. Brown. 1980. Comparative respiratory physiology and ecology of phyllopod Crustacea. Crustaceana, 55: 1-10.
Fryer, G. 1988. Studies on the functional morphology and biology of the Notostraca (Crustacea: Branchiopoda). Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences, 321: 27-124.
Scholnick, D. 1995. Sensitivity of metabolic rate, growth, and fecundity of tadpole shrimp Biological Bulletin, 189: 22-28.to environmental variation.
Weeks, S. 1990. Life-history variation under varying degrees of intraspecific competition in the tadpole shrimp Journal of Crustacean Biology, 92: 498-503.(LeConte).