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FAQs about Harlequin Shrimps Identification

Related FAQs: Gnathophylliids 1Gnathophylliids 2, & FAQs on: Gnathophylliid Behavior, Gnathophylliid Compatibility, Gnathophylliid Selection, Gnathophylliid Systems, Gnathophylliid Feeding, Gnathophylliid Disease, Gnathophylliid Reproduction, & Marine Shrimps 1, Marine Shrimps 3, Shrimp Identification, Shrimp Selection, Shrimp Behavior, Shrimp Compatibility, Shrimp Systems, Shrimp Feeding, Shrimp Reproduction, Shrimp Disease, Cleaner Shrimp, Banded Coral Shrimp, Dancing Shrimp, Harlequin Shrimp, Pistol Shrimp, Saron Shrimp, Mantis Shrimp, Anemone Eating ShrimpCrustacean Identification, Crustacean Selection, Crustacean Behavior, Crustacean Compatibility, Crustacean Systems, Crustacean Feeding, Crustacean Disease, Crustacean Reproduction,

Related Articles: Harlequin Shrimp, Shrimp A Few Common Shrimps for the Marine Aquarium by James W. Fatherree,

- Identifying the Hymenocera Shrimps - Hi, How are the various species of harlequin shrimps identified? <Well... to my knowledge, there are only two species: H. elegans and H. picta. Telling them apart is reasonably easy as H. elegans almost always has some blue in its colored spots, and sometimes the spots are entirely blue. Spots on H. picta are typically a pink/salmon color with no blue at all.> Someone has recently discovered some here in South Africa and is trying to determine which of the harlequin shrimp species it is. Any ideas? <Try the colors first.> Many  thanks, James. <Cheers, J -- >

Shrimp ID help please -- 06/29/08 Hello WWM crew. Attached is a picture of a shrimp that I would like some help verifying its ID, please. This shrimp was found by a friend of mine while diving in Panama City, FL (northern Gulf of Mexico). She found it when she picked up a long spine sea urchin to show to a student (she is a dive instructor). She came to me and to a biology teacher for help in identification. The biology teacher thought it to possibly be in the Periclimenes family or possibly the Gnathophyllum family. <The latter... though at first I too thought it was a Palaemonid... faulty memory... more so all the time> I did a lot of Google work and also searched your site but found little info. Based on a few difficult to see photos, I believe it is Gnathophyllum elegans. This seems supported (at least down to the Gnathophyllum family) by the fact that it was found on the bottom of an urchin, and Julian Sprung's book "Invertebrates: A Quick Reference Guide" reports that Gnathophyllum may feed on the feet of urchins and sea stars. <Mmm, nah! Must> The best photos I could find with the full scientific name came from not what I would consider highly reliable sources and most of them were not written in English, but they were the closest matches I could find and did indicate the scientific name of Gnathophyllum elegans. Any help you could give towards a definite ID would be greatly appreciated. Also, what are your opinions as to their aquarium suitability (given that it would almost certainly require a species only biotype). I realize their natural diet would be difficult to replicate and not desirable to replicate in my opinion. Mr. Sprung recommends feeding finely chopped meaty foods and even flake foods; <No... like most of its family, this animal feeds on the tube feet of certain echinoderms found in its range. An interesting remark... it is recorded as a facultative cleaner, removing parasites from fishes, when young> however, I think he is somewhat overly optimistic on some animals' aquarium suitability. Thanks for all your help (past, present and future!). Sincerely, Rob Watson <Am almost sure this is Gnathophyllum panamense... found from the lower Sea of Cortez in Mexico's Baja to Ecuador... Bob Fenner>

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