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Phylum Arthropoda > Subphylum Crustacea > Class Malacostraca > Order Decapoda > prawns and shrimps
Palaemonid shrimps
Family Palaemonidae

updated Jan 2020

What are Palaemonid shrimps? Palaemonid shrimps are crustaceans that belong to Family Palaemonidae.

Features: This family is large and includes a wide range of shimps found in a wide range of habitats. On our shores, these include tiny (1-3cm) shrimps
seen living on other animals such as sea anemones, sea cucumbers, feather stars, and hard and soft corals. Some are also seen in small groups on the ground and among seaweeds. These shrimps are hard to spot as they are small and transparent; and usually only active at night and when their host is submerged.

About 1cm, several seen on
a Thorny sea cucumber.
Beting Bronok, Aug 05

About 1cm, a pair seen on
a Flowery sea pen.
Changi, May 05

Some Palaemonid shrimps on Singapore shores

Family Palaeomonidae recorded for Singapore
from Wee Y.C. and Peter K. L. Ng. 1994. A First Look at Biodiversity in Singapore.
in red are those listed among the threatened animals of Singapore from Davison, G.W. H. and P. K. L. Ng and Ho Hua Chew, 2008. The Singapore Red Data Book: Threatened plants and animals of Singapore
^from WORMS
++from The Biodiversity of Singapore, Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum.
+Other additions (Singapore Biodiversity Record, etc)

  Glass and commensal shrimps commonly seen awaiting identification
Species are difficult to positively identify without close examination.
On this website, they are grouped by external features for convenience of display.
  Carpet anemone shrimp
Red nose shrimps

  Family Palaemonidae (includes some freshwater species)

Anchistus custos
++Anchistus custoides
Anchistus miersi

^Ancylomenes aesopius=Periclimenes aesopius
++Ancylocaris brevicarpalis= Periclimenes brevicarpalis
(Peacock-tail anemone shrimp)
+Ancylomenes holthuisi
('Gelek' anemone shrimp)=Periclimenes holthuisi

++Brucecaris tenuis
(commensal with feather stars)

Conchodytes monodactylus
++Conchodytes placunae

Coralliocaris graminea
(Machine gun shrimp)

++Cristimenes commensalis
(commensal with feather stars)
++Cristimenes cristimanus=Periclimenes cristimanus
(Black urchin shrimp) (VU: Vulnerable)

^Cuapetes amymone=Periclimenes amymone
^Cuapetes calmani=Periclimenes calmani
^Cuapetes elegans=Periclimenes elegans
^Cuapetes grandis=Periclimenes grandis
^Cuapetes johnsoni
(Seagrass shrimp)=*Periclimenes johnsoni (VU: Vulnerable)

++Cuapetes platycheles
++Cuapetes seychellensis

++Dasycaris zanzibarica

++Hamodactylus noumeae

Harpiliopsis beaupresii

++Harpilius consobrinus
^Harpilius lutescens=Periclimenes lutescens

++Ischnopontonia lophos

Leander tenuicornis

++Leandrites celebensis

Macrobrachium idae
(NE: Presumed nationally extinct)
Macrobrachium latidactylus
(NE: Presumed nationally extinct)

++Macrobrachium malayanum=Macrobrachium geron
Macrobrachium neglectum
++Macrobrachium nipponense
Macrobrachium pilimanus
Macrobrachium platycheles
(CR: Critically endangered)
Macrobrachium rosenbergii
(Udang galah) (NE: Presumed nationally extinct)
Macrobrachium scabriculum
++Macrobrachium sundaicum
Macrobrachium trompii

++Manipontonia paeneglabra
++Manipontonia psamathe

Palaemon sp. (Glass shrimp)
++Palaemon semmelinkii
++Palaemon serrifer
++Palaemon aff. sewelli

++Palaemonella lata
Palaemonella pottsi
++Palaemonella rotumana=Palaemonella vetigialis

++Paraclimenaeus michaeli

Periclimenaeus tridentatus

^Periclimenella spinifera=Periclimenes spiniferus

Periclimenes brooki
++Periclimenes incertus
++Periclimenes kempi
++Periclimenes cf. obscurus
Periclimenes parvus
Periclimenes sechellensis
Periclimenes suvaensis

++Philarius gerlachei

++Phycomenes sulcatus

++Pontonides loloata

++Pontoniopsis comanthi

++Urocaridella antonbruuni
^Urocaridella urocaridella=Leander urocaridella

++Vir philippinensis



  • Toh Chay Hoon. 20 December 2013. Shrimps and saddleback anemonefish on carpet anemone off Pulau Hantu: Holthuis’s anemone shrimp, Periclimenes holthuisi and Saddleback anemonefish, Amphiprion polymnus. Singapore Biodiversity Records 2013: 126-127.
  • Chou, L. M., 1998. A Guide to the Coral Reef Life of Singapore. Singapore Science Centre. 128 pages.
  • Lim, S., P. Ng, L. Tan, & W. Y. Chin, 1994. Rhythm of the Sea: The Life and Times of Labrador Beach. Division of Biology, School of Science, Nanyang Technological University & Department of Zoology, the National University of Singapore. 160 pp.
  • Wee Y.C. and Peter K. L. Ng. 1994. A First Look at Biodiversity in Singapore. National Council on the Environment. 163pp.
  • Davison, G.W. H. and P. K. L. Ng and Ho Hua Chew, 2008. The Singapore Red Data Book: Threatened plants and animals of Singapore. Nature Society (Singapore). 285 pp.
  • Debelius, Helmut, 2001. Crustacea Guide of the World: Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, Pacific Ocean IKAN-Unterwasserachiv, Frankfurt. 321 pp.
  • Miyake, Sadayoshi, and Takahiro Fujino. "Pontoniid shrimps from the Palau Islands (Crustacea, Decapoda, Palaemonidae)." Journal of the Faculty of Agriculture, Kyushu University 14.3 (1968): 399-431.
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