Emerita analoga (Stimpson, ). Common name(s): Pacific sand crab, sand crab, mole crab. Synonyms: Hippa analoga, 3 cm preserved female. Scientific Name. Emerita analoga. Animal Type. Invertebrates. Diet. plankton, mostly dinoflagellates. Size. females: to 2 inches ( mm); males inches. Pacific Sand Crab (Mole Crab). Emerita analoga. Decapoda: Hippidae. Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 06/11/ © Peter J. Bryant. Back to Natural History.

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I am quick to burrow to evade birds Sandpipers, scooters and plovers and fish surfperch, corbina and small sharks that key in on me as a food source. This is the only local species of Emerita. It appears temporarily on Washington beaches mainly after warm events such as El Nino years. When a wave sweeps in, the animal pops up and rides the wave for a few feet; then it quickly burrows rear-first into the sand using its abdomen movie.

Back to Natural History of Orange County, California Back to Crustacea index page A very common and familiar burrowing crab on sandy beaches in Southern California, showing some impressive adaptations for its sandy habitat. Emerita has a barrel -shaped body.

Since sand crabs live in sand—the area of the ocean most often contaminated by toxins—they play an important role in the beach ecosystem. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. As the wave retreats it extends its long, feathery antennae and captures plankton and detritus from the retreating wave.

Emerita analoga Scientific classification Kingdom: Note that the normal gray color has faded because this is a preserved specimen. Tam; Irv Kornfield Volume 8 of Studies in Ecology 2nd ed.

If dislodged while feeding, sand crabs—in a manner most unusual for crustaceans—can swim or tread water by beating their back legs. Dorsal and ventral views of a preserved male, 2.

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WoRMS – World Register of Marine Species – Emerita analoga (Stimpson, )

The sand crabs with soft shells that have just moulted are kept for bait, while the hard-shelled crabs are thrown back into the sea. In some cultures, sand crabs are eaten as a analloga snack, such as in Thailand and parts of India. The first 4 pereopods are flattened, not chelateand emerira for digging. Look carefully next time you are walking down the beach after the crash of a wave moves back to the ocean and you just might catch a glimpse of me while I am capturing food.

Emerita analoga

Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature. Views Read Edit View history. On the right, the telson is held out to reveal the eggs held on the pleopods.

Its legs and uropods have hairy margins for rapid digging in the sand, for filtering food and transferring it to the mouth.

Note how the carapace is egg-shaped and the animal keeps its legs and other appendages folded underneath, maintaining a 3-dimensional egg-like contour. Analgoa sand crab has been evaluated as an indicator species for monitoring the level of domoic acid -synthesizing diatoms Pseudo-nitzschia spp. Other birds that eat sand crabs include willetsgodwitssurf scotersblackbellied ploversand curlews.

Week # 5: Pacific Sand Crab, Emerita analoga

The sand crab mates in spring and summer. The underside is nearly white. Sand crabs are a major food source for shore birds and for some kinds of fish. As the tide changes, Emerita changes its position on the beach; [5] most individuals stay in the zone of breaking waves. The species primarily inhabits beaches with clean, pebble and stone-free sand.

Emerita is a small genus of decapod crustaceansknown as mole crabssand crabssand fleassand fiddlers or sea cicada. It then retracts the antennae and scrapes the particles into its mouth. Two views of the ventral side of a 3 cm carapace length preserved female from Monterey Bay, CA.

Sand crabs moult periodically, so its exoskeleton may be found washed up on the beach. Sand crabs feed in the swash zone—an area of breaking waves. Why should humans care about me? To stay put in the sand, a crab burrows quickly and often. They are often prepared via shallow frying in a pan or deep frying in batter.


Between Pacific Tides 5th ed. Retrieved July 21, I am most frequently found on tidal sandy stretches of warm and sunny summertime beaches. Natural History of Orange County, California. Males are typically smaller than females, and in some species, such as Emerita rathbunaethe minute males live attached to the legs of the female.

Analoag sea otter also consumes them. After the wave retreats, the antennae are quickly coiled and retracted into the body.

The abdomen and telson are used for rapid digging into the sand as each wave begins to recede. No bigger than a thumb, a sand crab spends most of its time buried in shifting sand.

Emerita analoga | Zooplankton Guide

Since this is a preserved specimen the true color has faded. Laboratories use sand crabs in neurological studies because the crabs’ tails rmerita the largest sensory neurons found in any animal. As analogs name suggests, Sand Crabs, prefer open sandy areas where eerita are free to move with the ebb and flow of tides. Filter feeders, like sand crabs, ingest the toxin, and it progresses up the food chain. The antennal flagellum is long and featherlike used for filter feedingbut is folded beneath the mouth parts when not being used.

Natural History No bigger than a thumb, a sand crab spends most of its time buried in shifting sand. A female may produce as many as 45, eggs. Domoic acid—a naturally occurring toxin produced by microscopic algae—causes serious amnesic poisoning in higher animals, including humans.