Scleroplax granulata Rathbun, 1897
Common name(s): Burrow pea crab
|Synonyms: Scleroplax granulatus|
|Scleroplax granulata from a tubeworm burrow in Padilla Bay. Background ruler scale is cm and mm. Carapace dimensions for this male are 12 mm wide by 8 mm long.|
|(Photo by: Dave Cowles, June 2009)|
How to Distinguish from Similar Species: Mature males and females ofFabia subquadrata have long hairs on legs 3 and 4, plus the dactyls of the walking legs are strongly curved. Most other pea crabs have a carapace at least 1.5x as wide as long.
Geographical Range: Porcher Island, British Columbia, Canada to Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
Depth Range: Mid intertidal to 55 m
Habitat: Commensal in burrows of mudflat hosts such as Neotrypaea californiensis, Upogebia pugettensis, and the fat inkeeper worm Urechis caupo. Johnson and Snook say that the females of this species live in mussels and other bivalves.
Biology/Natural History: Feeds
on detritus. Also filter feeds with its maxillipeds.
More than one crab may be commensal in the same burrow. The bryozoan
elongata sometimes grows on the crab. In central CA, mature females
are most abundant February to April but may be found from January to August.
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Johnson and Snook, 1955
Lamb and Hanby, 2005
McConnaughey and McConnaughey, 1985
Ricketts et al., 1985
General Notes and Observations: Locations,
abundances, unusual behaviors:
This closeup of the face and claw of the male shows the red cornea of
the eye and the thick propodus
and curved dactyl
of the cheliped.