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Related FAQs: Isopods, Isopods 2, & FAQs on: Isopod Identification, Isopod Control, Isopod Reproduction... & Crustacean Parasitic Disease, Micro-Crustaceans, Amphipods, Copepods, Mysids, Hermit Crabs, Shrimps, Cleaner Shrimps, Banded Coral Shrimp, Mantis Shrimp, Anemone Eating ShrimpCrustacean Identification, Crustacean Selection, Crustacean Behavior, Crustacean Compatibility, Crustacean Systems, Crustacean Feeding, Crustacean Disease, Crustacean Reproduction, Parasitic Disease 1, Parasitic Disease 2, Parasitic Disease 3, Parasitic Disease 4, Parasitic Disease 5, Parasitic Disease 6, Parasitic Disease 7,

Related Articles:  Crustacean Parasitic Disease, Crustaceans, Marine Parasites, Cleaner Shrimps, Coral Banded Shrimp, Shrimp Gobies, Freshwater Shrimps

/A Diversity of Aquatic Life

Isopods, Rollie-Pollies that aren't much fun, Order Isopoda

By Bob Fenner

Double trouble, Anilocra on a Paranthias

    Back as a child, they were a hoot to put down your friends' shirts... but seeing them, generally positioned on a host fish in the wild, occasionally on one in captivity is no laughing matter.

    Isopods we encounter in the garden and not-so commonly in shallow marine environments are typically gray, scale-like... with "all the same feet" (iso-pods)... but the group is amongst the most diverse in the crustacea, with worm-like forms, some highly ornamented, sometimes with ghastly hook-like devices for holding on to food items...

    Most are small and inconspicuous, but you have likely seen the very deepwater Bathynomus species on television... these are amongst the largest crustaceans, exceeding a sixteen inches in length.

    Not all are parasitic... most are scavengers of sorts, a few eat algae, others carrion.

Anilocra laticaudata on the caudal peduncle of a Goatfish off Cancun, Mexico in the Caribbean.

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An unidentified isopod species apparently encamped near the eye of a small Scorpionfish in N. Sulawesi. I have some pix of two individuals covering the eyes, but it's too gross to post.

Unidentified isopod on a whip coral in N. Sulawesi.

Unidentified isopod parasitizing a Damselfish off of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. 

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