Leach’s squat lobster (Galathea squamifera)
|Researched by||Sonia Rowley||Refereed by||This information is not refereed|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||-|
Galathea squamifera is the most commonly found squat lobster on north European shores. It can reach lengths of up to 65 mm, having a carapace length of up to 35 mm. There is a pointed, triangular rostrum with 4 spines on either side. The first pair of pereopods are 1.5 times longer than the body. The chelae are well developed and are covered in scales without spines on the outer margin. Galathea squamifera is chestnut brown in colour with a greenish hint and red tipped spines. The carapace is shiny between grooves and has scattered short hairs.
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandGalathea squamifera is abundant throughout Britain and Ireland, except northeast coasts of Scotland and England, and the eastern coast of Ireland where, however, it is probably under-recorded.
Global distributionRecorded from northern Norway and around the British Isles south to the Bay of Biscay, the Azores, Canary and Cape Verde Islands, the southern North Sea and the Kattegat, and into the Mediterranean.
HabitatGalathea squamifera live under stones and rocks on the lower shore and in crevices and fissures in the subtidal zone to depths of about 180 m.
Depth range5 - 180 m
- Up to 65 mm in length; carapace up to 35 mm long.
- Chestnut brown in colour with a green tint and red tipped spines.
- Broad and dorso-ventrally flattened.
- Short and broad triangular rostrum, with 4 spines on each side.
- The first pair of pereopods are 1.5 times longer than the body.
- Chelae well developed and covered in scales on the outer margin.
This species is a filter feeder and a scavenger. Juveniles often have a reddish colour. Females carry eggs during late winter and early spring.
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Last Updated: 08/05/2008