Tanaids are small shrimp-like crustaceans mostly ranging from 2-5 mm in length. They are primarily marine and bottom-dwelling, and occur shallow as well as down to 9000 m depth in all oceans.

Tanaids have a carapace and conspicuous clawed gnathopods. Their walking legs are adapted to burrowing in the sediment. Some species are predators while others filter-feed. As with other peracarids, tanaids have direct development in the female brood pouch from which they get released as juveniles (manca).

Their are about 940 worldwide, at least 12 species occur in the Arctic.

Page Author: Bodil Bluhm
Created: September 1, 2010

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