A side view of the Peacock Mantis Shrimp.  Courtesy of Roy L. Caldwell


Ocean View Property

     The peacock mantis shrimp (Odontodactylus scyallarus) can be found in shallow tropical and temperate waters specifically in the tropical and subtropical reefs. (Thoen, et al 2014)(Science and Nature: Animals 2014). The peacock mantis shrimp is mostly in the Indian and Pacific Oceans and waters and around the areas of East Africa, North Australia, and South Japan (Caldwell 2006). Most are said to live in the areas between tidemarks, which are the highest and lowest points of the tide (Marine Education Society of Australasia 2013).

“Mantis shrimp near Nusa Kode Island,” by Alexander Vasenin, via Wikimedia Commons    The peacock mantis shrimp has a very noteworthy living style and way of life compared to other marine crustaceans. They take refuge in many different locations among the vast sea and coral covered seabed. For example, some of the areas where they live includes: cracks and breaks in coral or rocks mostly on the sandy or shelly ocean bottom (National Aquarium 2014). Another similar location is in rock formations around the seabed (Marine Education Society of Australasia 2013). Additionally, another habitat for the peacock mantis shrimp is in an excavated burrow.  They are known for occasionally taking or moving into an area built by organisms such as craps, shrimps, and flatfish (Science and Nature: Animals 2014).

    Although more often than not peacock mantis shrimp make there own homes where they burrow down in the sea bottom and construct a U-shaped hole in the mud, gravel, or sand.  These holes are usually made near the structure of coral reefs containing sea sponge (Baxamusa 2010). These burrows the shrimp make can be anywhere from 3 to 6 feet deep and are usually found at depths of 3-40 meters in water temperatures around 22-28 degrees Celsius.  This is exactly where you can find a Peacock Mantis Shrimp resting when its not busy chasing down its prey or relocating. (Baxamusa 2010)(Caldwell 2006).

 Picture of peacock mantis shrimp (Odontodactylus scyllarus). Taken at Tasik Ria house reef. Manado, Indonesia.  Reference Jens Petersen    Another thing you should know is the peacock mantis shrimp like many other organisms, they are very protective of its territory/ terrain and will not hold back from using its dangerous appendages against the trespasser (National Aquarium, 2014). This mantis shrimp is different from other crustaceans of its type because it goes out and hunts down living prey (Marine Education Society of Australasia, 2013). Although, it goes out and hunts there is little reason, besides than for food or for relocation, for the Mantis Shrimp to leave its home.  It is considered to be diurnal and nocturnal allowing which is quite helpful. There is plenty of other gadgets and specialties that the peacock mantis shrimp contains which leads us into the next part about this organism; their interaction with other species and the abilities it uses.

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