Species Hierarchy
Common name:


Species Info:

This lifeform is found in the eastern Pacific from California to Peru.

Commercial shrimps (Family Penaeidae) contain the following well-known species which are found along the eastern coast of the United States:

    Penaeus aztecus      Brown Shrimp       Mass to Texas
    Penaeus duorarum     Pink Night Shrimp  Chesapeake to Yucatan
    Penaeus setiferus    White Shrimp       New York to Mexico

Brown Shrimp (Penaeus aztecus) (Not pictured) can be recognized by the brown (sometimes paler) color. The spines on the bottom of the rostrum are characteristic of the genus. (The rostrum is the forward pointing head spine. This species can be up to 23.6 centimeters in length. Although this species has been found as far north as New England, it is primarily caught for food in the Gulf of Mexico.

Over half the poundage of commercial shrimp taken in the United States belongs to this species.

Pink Night Shrimp (Penaeus duorarum)(Not pictured) is found from the Chesapeake Bay to Yucatan, Mexico. This species can be up to twenty-eight centimeters in length. It is caught commercially in North Carolina and Florida. The color is gray, reddish brown, or variable.

White Shrimp (Penaeus setiferus) (Not pictured) is found from New York to Florida, Louisiana and Mexico. It is found primarily in brackish waters along the coast. It is caught commercially from North Carolina to Louisiana. In the 1930s, almost ninety-five percent of the commercial shrimp catch belonged to this species.

Shrimps (Decapoda\Natantia) are a group of the Shrimp and Crab Order (Order Decapoda). They may be divided into three main categories: Penaeidae, Stenopodidea, and Caridea. Here they are grouped into one mega order with the families in alphabetical sequence.

Shrimps and Crabs (Order Decapoda) contains most of the larger freshwater and marine species of crabs, crayfish, shrimp, and lobsters. They have a total of ten pairs of legs, four pairs of which are used for walking. Frequently the first pair of legs has been modified into pinchers used for eating and defense.

Here the Decapoda are divided into five different sub-orders which match the adult shapes of the various life forms. Also, the subdivision followed is close to the Borrandaile l907 system. The divisions are as follows:

              Natantia        Shrimp-like      
              Brachyura       Crab-like
              Anomura         Hermit Crabs and relatives
              Astacidea       Crayfish and Lobster-like
              Palinura        Spiny Lobsters and Spanish Lobster

The sub-classification of the Order Decapoda is in a state of change. For a short summary of this situation, please refer to pages two and three of Shrimps, Lobsters, and Crabs of the Atlantic Coast of the Eastern United States by Austin Williams published by the Smithsonian Press, Washington, D.C., in l984.  If one uses adult shape as a method of classification, one gets one organization, and if one uses larvae shape as a method of classification, one gets a different organization.

Crustaceans (Class Crustacea) is a large class of mostly aquatic animals. Although many species are marine, there is a large number of small freshwater species and a few species of larger freshwater crayfish. There are many subdivisions to the Crustacea including such diverse animals as water fleas, fish lice, barnacles, crabs, shrimp, and crayfish.

Jointed Legged Animals (Phylum Arthropoda) make up the largest phylum. There are probably more than one million different species of arthropods known to science. It is also the most successful animal phylum in terms of the total number of living organisms.

Butterflies, beetles, grasshoppers, various insects, spiders, and crabs are well-known arthropods.

The phylum is usually broken into the following five main classes:

   Arachnida:      Spiders and Scorpions
   Crustacea:      Crabs and Crayfish
   Chilopoda:      Centipedes
   Diplopoda:      Millipedes
   Insecta:        Insects

There are several other "rare" classes in the arthropods that should be mentioned. A more formal list is as follows:

   Sub Phylum Chelicerata

     C. Arachnida:      Spiders and scorpions
     C. Pycnogonida:    Sea spiders (500 species)
     C. Merostomata:    Mostly fossil species

   Sub Phylum Mandibulata

     C. Crustacea:      Crabs and crayfish
   Myriapod Group

     C. Chilopoda:      Centipedes
     C. Diplopoda:      Millipedes
     C. Pauropoda:      Tiny millipede-like
     C. Symphyla:       Garden centipedes

   Insect Group

     C. Insecta:        Insects

The above list does not include some extinct classes of Arthropods such as the Trilobites.

Animal Kingdom contains numerous organisms that feed on other animals or plants. Included in the animal kingdom are the lower marine invertebrates such as sponges and corals, the jointed legged animals such as insects and spiders, and the backboned animals such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.


Search Region:
Species Range:
Click to enlarge
(Click on an image below to display at left)

Quick Jump:
Click to jump to
Backward 10 species
Click to jump to
Backward 1 species
Click to jump to
Forward 1 species
Click to jump to
Forward 10 species