Roy's List of Stomatopods for the Aquarium
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Species: Lysiosquillina maculata

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L. maculata 1
L. maculata 2
L. maculata 3
L. maculata 4
Click on any image to see an enlargement. All photos © 2005 Roy Caldwell.

Common name: Zebra Mantis Shrimp, Striped Mantis Shrimp

Functional type: Spearer

Range: Indo-Pacific from Hawaii and Galapagos to East Africa

Habitat: Mud, sand and sandy reef flats

Depth: Low intertidal to 10 m

Home: Large, u-shaped burrow reinforced with mucus to bind sand

Diet: Fish, occasional shrimp and crab

Size: 1.5–40 cm (this is the largest of all stomatopods)

Color: Transverse stripes ranging from cream and tan to tan and very dark brown; meral spot pale tan to white; sexually mature females often with pink ovaries visible as a pink stripe running the length of the thorax and abdomen

Distinguishing Characters: Bilobed eyes covered with white spots; antennal scale with dark patch in center; raptorial dactyl with 10–11 teeth; sexually dimorphic, males with larger eyes and raptorial appendages

Activity: Almost never leaves burrow; hunts day and night; lives in monogamous pairs, male does most of the hunting

Aquarium Requirements:

Temperature: 22–28° C

Salinity: 33–36 PSU

Cohabitants: Will eat fish

Aquarium size (adult): 20 cm adult, 120 l

Aquarium substrate: Sand bed at least 1.5 times as deep as the animal is long

Suitability for Aquarium: Highly specialized requirements; small animals will excavate burrow in deep sand beds and grow rapidly; hardy

Availability: Occasionally available from commercial suppliers; almost always only males are caught and sold. It is possible to establish pairs, but females are very difficult to catch; commonly eaten

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