Lagoon sand shrimp - Gammarus insensibilis - General information
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| Researched by:
|| Refereed by:
||Dr Martin Sheader
||Arthropods, joint-legged animals, e.g. insects, crustaceans & spiders
||Crabs, lobsters, sand hoppers and sea slaters
| Recorded distribution in Britain and Ireland
||In England, distribution is restricted to the central southern coast with two isolated east coast sites. Not recorded west of Fleet in Dorset and is absent from the lagoons of Cornwall.
| Habitat information
||A species limited to sheltered, shallow, brackish water habitats with variety of sediments ranging from organic muds to shingle with various admixtures of sand and silt-clay. Gammarus insensibilis appears to be associated with the alga Chaetomorpha linum which may form extensive floating mats. Sheader & Sheader (1985) report that in the Mediterranean the species is generally subtidal down to 15m. In the UK lagoons are shallow so the species is found to a maximum depth of 2-3m.
||A small shrimp-like species which grows up to about 19 mm in length. The head has lateral lobes that slope forwards and the eyes are moderately large and kidney shaped. It is most easily confused with the more familiar Gammarus locusta. The most easily observed difference is the absence in the male Gammarus insensibilis of calceoli (club-shaped sensory projections) on the flagellum of the 2nd antennae.
This review can be cited as follows:
Nicola White 1999.
Lagoon sand shrimp.
Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information Sub-programme [on-line].
Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom.
Available from: <http://www.marlin.ac.uk/speciesfullreview.php?speciesID=3372>