Habitat and Ecology
- Holthuis, L.B. 1991. FAO species catalogue. Vol 13. Marine lobsters of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of species of interest to fisheries known to date. FAO fisheries Synopsis. 125 (13):292 p.
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Scyllarus pygmaeus
Below is the sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.
See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen.
Other sequences that do not yet meet barcode criteria may also be available.
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Download FASTA File
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Scyllarus pygmaeus
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 1
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
There is no overall population information available for this species. This is a common species and is captured in trawl fisheries.
It is unknown whether this species is being impacted on by any major threat processes. However, this species has experienced a local decline in Cape Creus, Spain, where it was previously caught in small quantities, but now it is considered to be 'very rare' (Linares 2008 in Lloret and Riera 2008).
This species has been listed by the Council of Europe as a protected species in the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (Council of Europe 1979). Further research into the population demographics and potential threats is suggested as these data are lacking.
Scyllarus pygmaeus is a species of slipper lobster that lives in shallow water in the Mediterranean Sea and eastern Atlantic Ocean. It grows to a length of 55 mm (2.2 in), which is too small for it to be fished for. The juvenile form was first described in 1885, with the description of the adult following in 1888 as a result of the Challenger expedition.
S. pygmaeus is the smallest slipper lobster species, with a carapace length of 11.5 millimetres (0.45 in) for females, and 10 mm (0.39 in) for males. The total body length can reach 55 mm (2.2 in), but is typically less than 40 mm (1.6 in). Its small size precludes S. pygmaeus from being a target for fisheries. The body of S. pygmaeus is "pale brownish or pinkish with patches of darker hairs".
- The anterior part of the abdominal tergites have a groove lined with hairs in S. pygmaeus but not in S. arctus.
- S. arctus has a forward-pointing, pointed tip to the second abdominal sternites, while in S. pygmaeus it is rounded and points backwards.
- S. pygmaeus has a conical tubercle on the fifth thoracic somite, while the tubercle is compressed rather than conical in S. arctus.
- The sculptured posterior part of the first abdominal somite is wider in the centre than at the edges in S. pygmaeus, while in S. arctus it is an even width throughout.
Distribution and ecology
Scyllarus pygmaeus has a wide distribution in the Mediterranean Sea and islands in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, including Madeira, the Canary Islands and the Cape Verde Islands. It has not been observed off the coast of North Africa further east than Morocco. It lives at depths of 5–100 metres (16–328 ft), where it is nocturnal and at its shallower ranges lives in Posidonia meadows. Females carry eggs in June and August.
|External identifiers for Scyllarus pygmaeus|
|Encyclopedia of Life||344946|
Scyllarus pygmaeus was first described in 1888 by Charles Spence Bate as part of the results of the Challenger expedition. He based his description of "Arctus pygmaeus" on material from "off Gomera" in the Canary Islands. In the same publication, he also described "Arctus immaturus" from the Cape Verde archipelago, which Eugène Louis Bouvier realised in 1915 was simply the "nisto" (juvenile) stage of S. pygmaeus. Applying the principle of first reviser, Bouvier established that S. pygmaeus would be the valid name, over S. immaturus. Although S. pygmaeus is not rare in the Mediterranean Sea, its presence there was overlooked for decades, due to the confusion between it and the more conspicuous S. arctus, whose immature form S. pygmaeus was often assumed to be. In 1960, Jacques Forest and Lipke Holthuis demonstrated for the first time that S. pygmaeus does indeed occur in the Mediterranean Sea, from museum specimens at the Stazione Zoologica in Naples.
The juvenile "nisto" form of S. pygmaeus was named earlier than the adult form; Sarado described it in 1885 under the name Nisto laevis in his 1885 work Étude sur les crustacés de Nice ("Study of the crustaceans of Nice").
- R. Wahle, A. MacDiarmid, A. Cockcroft, T. Y. Chan & M. Butler (2011). "Scyllarus pygmaeus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
- Lipke B. Holthuis (1991). "Scyllarus pygmaeus". Marine Lobsters of the World. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125. Food and Agriculture Organization. pp. 224–225. ISBN 92-5-103027-8.
- C. Lewinsohn (1974). "The occurrence of Scyllarus pygmaeus (Bate) in the Eastern Mediterranean (Decapoda, Scyllaridae)". Crustaceana 27 (1): 43–46. doi:10.1163/156854074X00217. JSTOR 20102112.
- "Scyllarus pygmaeus (Bate, 1888)". DORIS: Données d'Observations pour la Reconnaissance et l'Identification de la faune et de la flore Subaquatiques (in French). Fédération Française d'Études et de Sports Sour-Marins. Retrieved September 28, 2010.
- C. Spence Bate (1888). "Tribe Synaxidea". Report on the Crustacea Macrura collected by H.M.S. Challenger during the Years 1873-1876. Report of the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the Years 1873–76. pp. 56–99.
- J. Forest & L. B. Holthuis (1960). "The occurrence of Scyllarus pygmaeus (Bate) in the Mediterranean". Crustaceana 1 (2): 156–163. doi:10.1163/156854060x00177. JSTOR 20102321.
- Ferran Palero, Guillermo Guerao, Paul F. Clark & Pere Abelló (2009). "The true identities of the slipper lobsters Nisto laevis and Nisto asper (Crustacea: Decapoda: Scyllaridae) verified by DNA analysis". Invertebrate Systematics 23 (1): 77–85. doi:10.1071/IS08033.
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