Triops australiensis

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Triops australiensis
Triops australiensis 2.jpg
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Branchiopoda
Order: Notostraca
Family: Triopsidae
Genus: Triops
T. australiensis
Binomial name
Triops australiensis
(Spencer and Hall, 1895) [1]
T aust.PNG
The range of Triops australiensis

Triops australiensis, sometimes referred to as a shield shrimp, [2] is an Australian species of the tadpole shrimp Triops .



Triops australiensis has a wide distribution across Australia, excluding the northernmost parts of Western Australia, and Queensland. [3] It is also absent from Tasmania in the south, where it is replaced by Lepidurus apus . [1] The two species can be distinguished by the presence of a supra-anal plate between the caudal rami at the end of the abdomen in L. apus, which is lacking in T. australiensis. [4]


T. australiensis inhabits temporary pools of water in the arid regions of the Australian outback. When desiccated pools fill with water, the resting eggs hatch into nauplii, and rapidly develop to adulthood. Reproduction succeeds within a few weeks of hatching. [5] Adults achieve a maximum size of around 3 inches (7.6 cm), which is considered large for a tadpole shrimp.

Water chemistry

Triops australiensis can tolerate a pH of 7–9, and can live in both hard and soft water, but the eggs of T. australiensis are more likely to hatch in water with a low mineral content.

Related Research Articles

Branchiopoda Class of crustaceans

Branchiopoda is a class of crustaceans. It comprises fairy shrimp, clam shrimp, Cladocera, Notostraca and the Devonian Lepidocaris. They are mostly small, freshwater animals that feed on plankton and detritus.

Caridea Infraorder of shrimp

The Caridea, commonly known as caridean shrimp, are an infraorder of shrimp within the order Decapoda. They are found widely around the world in both fresh and salt water.

Notostraca Order of small freshwater animals

The order Notostraca comprises the single family Triopsidae, containing the tadpole shrimp or shield shrimp. The two genera, Triops and Lepidurus, are considered living fossils, having not changed significantly in outward form since the Triassic. They have a broad, flat carapace, which conceals the head and bears a single pair of compound eyes. The abdomen is long, appears to be segmented and bears numerous pairs of flattened legs. The telson is flanked by a pair of long, thin caudal rami. Phenotypic plasticity within taxa makes species-level identification difficult, and is further compounded by variation in the mode of reproduction. Notostracans are omnivores living on the bottom of temporary pools and shallow lakes.

Anostraca Order of crustaceans

Anostraca is one of the four orders of crustaceans in the class Branchiopoda; its members are also known as fairy shrimp. They live in vernal pools and hypersaline lakes across the world, and they have even been found in deserts, ice-covered mountain lakes and Antarctic ice. They are usually 6–25 mm (0.24–0.98 in) long. Most species have 20 body segments, bearing 11 pairs of leaf-like phyllopodia, and the body lacks a carapace. They swim "upside-down" and feed by filtering organic particles from the water or by scraping algae from surfaces. They are an important food for many birds and fish, and some are cultured and harvested for use as fish food. There are 300 species spread across 8 families.

<i>Triops</i> Genus of small freshwater animals

Triops is a genus of small crustaceans in the order Notostraca. Some species are considered living fossils, with a fossil record that reaches back to the late Carboniferous, 300 million years ago. The long lasting resting eggs of one species, Triops longicaudatus, are commonly sold in kits as a pet. In contact with fresh water the animals hatch. Most Triops have a life expectancy of up to 90 days, and can tolerate a pH range of 6–10. In nature they often inhabit temporary pools.

Palm Valley (Northern Territory)

Palm Valley, within the Finke Gorge National Park, is an east-west running valley in the Krichauff Range 123 km southwest of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory, Australia. Palm Valley and the surrounding area is the only place in Central Australia where Red Cabbage Palms survive. The nearest specimens are 850 kilometres away in Queensland. The surrounding region is largely dry Central Ranges xeric scrub.

<i>Triops longicaudatus</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Triops longicaudatus is a freshwater crustacean of the order Notostraca, resembling a miniature horseshoe crab. It is characterized by an elongated, segmented body, a flattened shield-like brownish carapace covering two thirds of the thorax, and two long filaments on the abdomen. The genus name Triops comes from Ancient Greek ὤψ or ṓps, meaning "eye" prefixed with Latin tri-, "three", in reference to its three eyes. Longicaudatus is a Latin neologism combining longus ("long") and caudatus ("tailed"), referring to its long tail structures. Triops longicaudatus is found in freshwater ponds and pools, often in places where few higher forms of life can exist. Like its relative Triops cancriformis, the longtail tadpole shrimp is considered a living fossil because its basic prehistoric morphology has changed little in the last 70 million years, exactly matching their ancient fossils. Triops longicaudatus is one of the oldest animal species still in existence.

Linderiella occidentalis is a species of fairy shrimp native to California. It is a small crustacean in the family Chirocephalidae family. It has a delicate elongated body, large stalked compound eyes, no carapace, and eleven pairs of swimming legs. It glides gracefully upside down, swimming by beating its legs in a complex, wavelike movement that passes from front to back. Like other fairy shrimp, L. occidentalis feeds on algae, bacteria, protozoa, rotifers and detritus.

<i>Branchinecta lynchi</i> Species of small freshwater animal

The vernal pool fairy shrimp, Branchinecta lynchi, is a species of freshwater crustacean in the family Branchinectidae. It is endemic to the U.S. states of Oregon and California, living in vernal pools as well as non-vernal pool habitat. They range in size from 0.43 to 0.98 inches long. Vernal pool fairy shrimp are listed as a vulnerable species on the IUCN Red List, and has been listed as Federally Threatened species since 1994.

<i>Lepidurus packardi</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Lepidurus packardi, known by the common name vernal pool tadpole shrimp, is a rare species of tadpole shrimp (Notostraca).

<i>Lepidurus</i> Genus of tadpole shrimp

Lepidurus is a genus of small crustaceans in the order Notostraca. It is the larger of the two extant genera of the tadpole shrimps, the other being Triops. They are commonly found in vernal pools and survive dry periods with the help of long lasting resting eggs.

<i>Artemia salina</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Artemia salina is a species of brine shrimp – aquatic crustaceans that are more closely related to Triops and cladocerans than to true shrimp. It belongs to a lineage that does not appear to have changed much in 100 million years.

<i>Triops newberryi</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Triops newberryi is a species of Triops found on the western coast of North America, commonly in valleys throughout the states of Washington, Oregon, California, and small areas of Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Mexico, with at least one disjunct population in Kansas. They are found in vast numbers though in the Coachella Valley in California. T. newberryi has been reported to have potential as a biocontrol agent for larval mosquitoes breeding in seasonally-flooded habitats. T. newberryi is genetically distinct from T. longicaudatus, the dominant species in the Central United States.

<i>Triops granarius</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Triops granarius is a species of tadpole shrimp with a broad distribution from Africa and the Middle East to China and Japan, although there are indications that it, as presently defined, is a species complex. They have elongated bodies and large flaps. Triops granarius can be kept as pets in home aquaria. Their life expectancy is up to 90 days, and in that time they can grow more than 6 cm in length.

<i>Triops cancriformis</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Triops cancriformis, or tadpole shrimp, is a species of tadpole shrimp found in Europe to the Middle East and India.

<i>Tanymastix stagnalis</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Tanymastix stagnalis is a species of Anostraca that lives in temporary pools across Europe. It may reach up to 2 cm (0.8 in) in some areas and has 11 pairs of bristly, flattened appendages. It swims upside-down and filters food particles from the water. It is the only species of Anostraca in Ireland, having been discovered in Rahasane turlough in 1974.

Crustacean Subphylum of arthropods

Crustaceans form a large, diverse arthropod taxon which includes such animals as crabs, lobsters, crayfish, shrimps, prawns, krill, woodlice, and barnacles. The crustacean group can be treated as a subphylum under the clade Mandibulata; because of recent molecular studies it is now well accepted that the crustacean group is paraphyletic, and comprises all animals in the clade Pancrustacea other than hexapods. Some crustaceans are more closely related to insects and the other hexapods than they are to certain other crustaceans.

<i>Lepidurus apus</i> Species of small freshwater animal

Lepidurus apus, commonly known as a tadpole shrimp, is a notostracan in the family Triopsidae, one of a lineage of shrimp-like crustaceans that have had a similar form since the Triassic period and are considered living fossils. This species is cosmopolitan, inhabiting temporary freshwater ponds over much of the world, and the most widespread of the tadpole shrimps. Like other notostracans, L. apus has a broad carapace, long segmented abdomen, and large numbers of paddle-like legs. It reproduces by a mixture of sexual reproduction and self-fertilisation of females.


  1. 1 2 W. D. Williams (1968). "The distribution of Triops and Lepidurus (Branchiopoda) in Australia" (PDF). Crustaceana . 14 (2): 119–126. doi:10.1163/156854068X00476. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-09-21.
  2. "Shield Shrimp". Queensland Museum. 2010–2013. Retrieved 2013-06-13.
  3. Michael J. Tyler; Margaret Davies; Graeme F. Watson & David J. Williams (1996). "Significant extension in northern Australia of the known geographic range of the Shield Shrimp Triops australiensis (Crustacea: Notostraca)". Hydrobiologia . 318 (3): 135–137. doi:10.1007/BF00016675.
  4. William David Williams (1980). "Arachnids and Crustaceans". Australian freshwater life: the invertebrates of Australian inland waters (2nd ed.). Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 118–184. ISBN   978-0-333-29894-7.
  5. Donald Thomas Anderson (1996). "Phylum Crustacea". Atlas of Invertebrate Anatomy. University of New South Wales Press. pp. 26–28. ISBN   978-0-86840-207-9.