BCB311

Thursday, March 16, 2006

CRUSTACEANS - JOINTED APPENDAGES FOR LOCOMOTION & FEEDING

In this report I will cover most of the features that makes up the physical characteristics of crustaceans, which includes a brief description of what crustaceans are and why they are the most diverse group of marine arthropods and ecological importance of crustaceans.

Crustaceans are a large group of arthropods that are treated as a subphylum and are found in marine, freshwater and terrestrial environments although they are mostly found in aquatic ecosystems. They have three distinct body divisions that include the head, the thorax or when there is no clear distinction between the head and thorax then it's called the cephalothorax, they are metameric and the appendages are segmented, there are usually five pairs of appendages strengthened for walking, protection and feeding.

The most important groups found abundantly of the crustaceans are the copepods, barnacles, malacostraca (Craps, shrimps, lobster and krill), branchiopoda. Groups that posses a well developed abdomen, usually have six specially adapted appendages for locomotion of which 5 are called swimmeret (pleopod) and one pair called the uropods, which can be combined with the terminal telson from the tail fan to serve as rudders in locomotion. The scientific classification of the crustaceans reads as follows:

Kingdom:     Animalia
Phylum:       Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class:          Branchiopoda 
                    Remipedia 
                    Cephalocarida
                    Maxillapoda
                    Ostracoda
                    Malacostraca
Source: www.Wikipedia.com

The exoskeleton is divided into a number of plates and cylinders; the jointed appendages are described as the point where the exoskeleton remains flexible and thin at the junction of the plates and cylinders, which allows the crustaceans to move more efficiently.

Many of the crustacean's appendages are biramous, which means that the appendages have an outer exopod and an inner endopod. They have a hardened exoskeleton that contains calcium carbonate. The head bears a pair of compound eyes and three pairs of mouth parts, which are a pair of mandibles and two pairs of maxilla used for handling food.

They have biphasic life cycle changing around the larval and juvenile phases and is common in most marine invertebrates, which suggest that the earliest levels of metazoan evolution had this type of life cycle (Hans et al 2002).

Crustaceans have a constant feeding activity and will undergo certain times of fasting during development, which occurs through molting (Sanchez-Pazza et al 2004). Molting involves different stages with different feeding behaviors and requires sufficient energy from the food available to crustaceans (Sanchez-Pazza et al 2004)

References: http://faculty.evansville.edu/de3/b10802/PPoint/Arthropoda/10-Arthropod.ppt .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crustaceans

A Sanchez-Paza,b, F Garcý a-Carren oc, A Muhlia-Almaza, A B. Peregrino-Uriarteb, J Herna ndez-Lo pezb, G Yepiz-Plascenciab, (2004) Usage of energy reserves in crustaceans during starvation: Status and future directions, Centro de Investigaciones Biolo´gicas Del Noroeste (CIBNOR), Unidad Hermosillo, Centenario Norte #53 Col. Prados Del Centenario, Hermosillo, Sonora C.P. Mexico

Hans U. Dahmsa, John A. Fornshellb, Ben J. Fornshellc(2002) Key for the identication of crustacean nauplii,Department of Systematic Biology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, USA

 
Ashton Mouton
Student Number: 2432509
University of the Western Cape
Private Bag X17
Bellville 7535
 

1 Comments:

  • "They have three distinct body divisions that include the head, the thorax or when there is no clear distinction between the head and thorax then it's called the cephalothorax, they are metameric and the appendages are segmented, there are usually five pairs of appendages strengthened for walking, protection and feeding." Sentence is huge, complex and you got lost!

    You mention three divisions but only mention two. The sentence should be split into Head, Thorax and Abdomen. The next sentence discuss the modification of fussion of divisions. Then write a sentence on the JOINTED appendages.

    Please check on how to reference!

    By Anonymous Rich, at Friday, March 17, 2006 3:53:00 pm  

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