Crustacean
An exceedingly diverse, mostly marine, subphylum of arthropods, distinguished by chewing mandibles and two pairs of antennae. Baseline species range in size from microscopic to the Japanese Spider Crab, with a leg-span of 3 meters. Most terragen biospheres include crustacea of some form or another. Amphipods, barnacles, copepods, isopods (woodlice), and decapods (shrimp, lobsters, crayfish, crabs) are among the many groups of crustaceans.

Despite their abundance and ease by which they can be kept, most crustacea - especially the smaller ones - are not a popular subject for provolution. This is probably due to their aquatic habitat, small size and lack of grasping appendages. More popular are the higher decapods, such as crabs and lobsters, which have been provolved to presapience and even full sophonthood on a number of occasions, usually with the aid of symbiotic bionano and intelligence augmenting wetware.
 
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    Tiny shrimp-like crustaceans; some types such as krill are an important food-source for many baleen whales and other marine animals. They are a a major constituent of Terragen zooplankton, and an important source of protein for the whale provolves of Oro Mistral and Pacifica.
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Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev

Initially published on 07 January 2002.