The Red Reef Hermit Crab (Dardanus arrosor) is a decapod crustacean in the Diogenidae family of crabs. It is also known as the Mediterranean Hermit Crab.
The Red Reef Hermit Crab has a beige-coloured shell, called a carapace. The body of the Hermit Crab is hidden in the shell. The colour of its body varies from bright red to bright orange. Its eyes are at the tips of two eyestalks. The eyestalks are streaked red and white, and the eyes are bluish. It is a decapod, which means that it has ten appendages (two claws and eight legs). Its two red claws have a black or yellow tip. The claws have hair-like spines and warty tubercules. The left claw is larger than the right claw.
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The Wrinkled Dune Snail
(Xeroplexa intersecta previously Candidula intersecta) is an air-breathing pulmonate gastropod mollusc in the Geomitridae family of terrestrial (land) snails. It is an invertebrate, because it does not have a backbone. Its shell is its exo-skeleton (outside skeleton).
The Wrinkled Dune Snail is yellowish-beige with dark-brown and copper bands. The round, globular, coarse (not glossy) shell has a right-handed whorl, which is called a dextral shell. There are five whorls with a slightly raised central spire. Its shell aperture (opening) does not have a lip. The body is bluish-grey with long upper tentacles and short lower tentacles on ts head. Its head extends to form a snout (proboscis). Its eyes are at the tip of the tentacles.
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The Grove Unbanded Snail – Yellow Form (Cepaea nemoralis) is an air-breathing pulmonate gastropod mollusc in the Helicidae family of terrestrial (land) snails. It is a variant of the Grove Snail, also known as the Brown-Lipped Snail. It is an invertebrate, because it does not have a backbone. Its shell is its exo-skeleton (outside skeleton).
The Grove Unbanded Snail – Yellow Form can be varied in its appearance. The surface of its shell is semi-glossy. The shell has a right-handed whorl, which is called a dextral shell. The colour of the Grove Snail’s shell can be reddish, brownish, yellow, or creamy-white, with or without bands. The Grove Unbanded Snail – Yellow Form has a light, creamy yellow shell. It does not have prominent dark-brown bands or stripes. It has a white lip, not a brown lip. Its head extends to form a snout (proboscis). It has tentacles on its head. Its eyes are at the tip of the tentacles.
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The Common Prawn (Palaemon serratus) is a marine (saltwater) crustacean in the Palaemonidae family of invertebrate ten-footed shrimp (decapod). It is related to the crab and the lobster.
The Common Prawn is transparent (see-through) to pinkish-brown with reddish striped-liked markings and patterns. It has an exo-skeleton (outside skeleton) called a carapace or shell. Its forward extension of the carapace in front of its eyes, called the rostrum, curves upwards. The rostrum is also bifurcated at the tip, which means that it is split into two parts. It has long, white antennae. It has bulging eyes. It has ten legs.
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The Golden King Crab (Lithodes longispina) is a marine (saltwater) crustacean in the Lithodoidea family of crabs. However, many scientists think it should be classified in the Paguroidea superfamily of hermit crabs. It is a decapod because it has 10 limbs.
The Golden King Crab has five pairs of spiny limbs – 10 limbs. The front pair of legs has claws, or nippers. Its rounded-triangular exoskeleton shell (carapace) is pale orange with spines.
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The Vineyard Snail (Cernuella virgata or Helicella virgata) is a pulmonate air-breathing gastropod mollusc in the Geomitridae family of terrestrial (land) hairy snails. It is also known as the Common White Snail.
The Vineyard Snail usually has a creamy-white shell with fine growth lines. It has a darker line and white line along the outside of its shell. However, its shell can be variable. It has whorls, and the last whorl is slightly rounded. It has a brown mouth with pink inside. It shell is faintly glossy. Its body is grey.
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What are the similarities and differences between the Common Sea Urchin (Echinus esculentus), the Green Sea Urchin (Psammechinus miliaris or Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis), and the Purple Sea Urchin (Paracentrotus lividus or Strongylocentrotus purpuratus)?
The Common Sea Urchin, Green Sea Urchin, and Purple Sea Urchin are all spiny marine (saltwater) echinoderms in the Parechinidae family. Echinoderm means hedgehog skin.
The Common Sea Urchin, Green Sea Urchin, and Purple Sea Urchin are all spherical with short spines. They all have a hard shell called a test.
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The Hermann’s Tortoise (Testudo hermanni) is a small to medium-sized reptile in the Testudinoidea family of land chelonians. It is related to the Greek Tortoise (Testudo graeca).
The Hermann’s Tortoise has a slightly domed, rounded shell, called a carapace. The carapace is black and pale-yellow with markings, but the colour fades with age, and becomes grey or straw-coloured. Its underbelly shell, called a plastron, is creamy-beige. It has no teeth, but it has a strong, short beak. It has scaly brownish-grey, stumpy legs with five claws. Its back legs are thicker than its front legs. The tip of its tail has a spur (a horny, short spike).
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The Kentish Garden Snail (Monacha cantiana) is a pulmonate gastropod mollusk in the Hygromiidae family of terrestrial (land) hairy snails.
The Kentish Garden Snail has a creamy-white to dark shell, usually turning reddish near the mouth. Its mouth is white-lipped.
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The Spider Tortoise (Pyxis arachnoides) is a reptile in the Testudinidae family. It is named after the pattern on its shell.
The Spider Tortoise has a web-like pattern of yellow lines on its dark-brown carapace (upper shell). It has a dark head with yellow spots. It has a yellow, semi-hinged underbelly – the under shell is called a plastron. It pulls its head into its shell for protection. Its legs and tail are brown.
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The Florida Horse Conch (Triplofusus papillosus) is a large tropical marine (saltwater) gastropod mollusc in the Fasciolariidae family of sea spindle snails and tulip snails. It is not a true conch shell from the Strombidae family of sea snails.
The Florida Horse Conch is greyish-white or brownish with a light-brown or dark-brown periostracum, which is the thin coating on its shell. It has a long siphonal canal and up to 10 whorls around its shell. It can retract the soft part of its body entirely into its shell and close the operculum (lid). The soft part of its body is bright orange.
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The European Pond Snail (Radix peregra) is an air-breathing, freshwater mollusc in the Lymnaeidae family of pond snails. It is an aquatic pulmonate gastropod. It is an invertebrate because it does not have a backbone. Its shell is its exo-skeleton (outside skeleton).
The European Pond Snail has a brown shell that spirals clockwise. It has four whorls with fine grooves. The last whorl is next to the opening. Its tentacles are short, and the posterior end of its foot is round.
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It is common for the shell of a tortoise, in the wild, to show signs of everyday chips and knocks, both on the upper shell (carapace) and the lower shell (plastron).
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The Cambodia Land Snail (Amphidromus atricallosus classiarius) is a tropical, air-breathing invertebrate gastropod mollusc in the Camaenidae family of arboreal (tree-living) pulmonate land snails. An invertebrate does not have a backbone and gastropod means stomach-footed.
The Cambodia Land Snail can be varied in colour, often quite colourful but a few species can be dark, with a smooth shell that can be thin and fragile or heavy and solid. Different species have different colours, and can have varied number of whorls, and the direction of the way its shell spirals. It can be dextral shell-coiling (right-handed) or sinistral shell-coiling (left-coiling). The photographed snail is sinistral with a heavy shell. It has 6-8 pale-coloured whorls. It has a large aperture. Its ‘foot’ (soft body) is brown.
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The Russian Tortoise (Agrionemys horsfieldii) is a small chelonian reptile in the Testudinidae family. It is also known as the Afghan Tortoise, the Central Asian Tortoise, Horsfield’s Tortoise, the Steppe Tortoise, or the Four-Clawed Tortoise.
The Russian Tortoise can be various colours, but it usually has a brown or grey-black top dome-shaped shell, called a carapace. It has faded yellow-beige markings between its scutes (scales). It has a paler bottom shell, called a plastron. Its body is straw-yellow and brown. It has a small head and brown eyes. It has four toes on its thick, stumpy legs.
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The Giant Isopod Crustacean (Bathynomus giganteus) is a deep-sea aquatic saltwater crustacean. It is related to the shrimp and the crab.
The Giant Isopod Crustacean is a decapod with 10 legs. It looks like a woodlouse because it has a hard exo-skeleton with overlapping segments. It can curl up into a ball. It has large compound eyes. It is pinkish or pale-lilac in colour.
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What is a bird’s egg tooth? How is it used when it hatches from its egg?
When a chick is ready to hatch out of its egg it must break the egg shell.
The chick has a small, sharp, white, projection on the tip of its beak, called an egg tooth.
It is not really a tooth. It is a hard piece of the beak’s tip.
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The Sundial Sea Snail (Architectonica perspectiva) is a marine (saltwater) gastropod mollusc. It is also known as the Staircase Shell. Gastropod means stomach-footed.
The Sundial Sea Snail has a white to yellowish-brown cone-shaped shell, lighter at the edges, and lighter underneath. The spirals of the shell have shades of black, white, and brown. Its long thin body and tentacles are striped. It has a horny, dark-brown operculum. The operculum is attached at the muscle to the upper surface of the back part of the snail’s ‘foot.’
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The Greek Tortoise (Testudo graeca graeca) is a small chelonian reptile. It is also known as the Spur-Thighed Tortoise.
The Greek Tortoise varies in colour and shell pattern, from dark-brown to bright yellow. The shell, called the carapace, is domed, and in some sub-species it bends upwards at the edges.
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The Common Marine Hermit Crab (Pagurus bernhardus) is a saltwater aquatic decapod (10-armed) crustacean. It is also known as the Soldier Crab.
Hermit crabs include the Marine Hermit Crab, which lives in saltwater, and the Land Hermit Crab, which is terrestrial in tropical regions.
The Common Marine Hermit Crab is a crab inside a shell – its mobile home. It finds empty mollusc shells to live in. It has a long soft body – not like land crabs which have a hard exo-skeleton – which is why it looks for a hard shell to protect it. It can put its whole body inside the shell. As it grows, it looks for larger shells.
The Common Marine Hermit Crab has a spirally-curved soft body (abdomen) with a columella on the tip, which is used to hold onto the shell it occupies. It has 10 appendages (legs, called pereiopods), but two of them are claws, called nippers, pinchers, or chelipeds. Its large black compound eyes are at the end of an eyestalk. It has gills to breathe (like fish).
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