Bet you didn't know this! (Facts)

First and foremost, you should know that this species does not only go by its scientific name, Pseudosquilla ciliata. This species goes by many common names; One of these common names being False shrimp, this name is actually the English translation of the species genus and specific epithet (Campbell, 2012). A second name this interesting species goes by is Rainbow shirimp (Campbell, 2012).  Continue to read and you will find out why.


Journee and I were fortunate to find out, after researching a bit, why this species took on the name Rainbow shrimp.  P.ciliata takes this name on because of its incredible ability to blend in with the surfaces it lives on (Campbell, 2012). It is able to do this because of the multiple colors it possesses.  This species can blend in with almost all surfaces it inhabits.  Sometimes it’s even possible for Pseudosquillia ciliata to conform or completely camouflage with the surfaces they are on; this takes many weeks and many rounds of ecdysis - molting (Stacey et al, 2002). P.ciliata can take on body colors including yellow, black, brown, green and more (Campbell, 2012)! 

 Flickr: Charlene Mcbride © 2010


 Because P.ciliata are able to camouflage with the surfaces they are on, this species inhabits burrows within dead coral; they hide and sleep in these burrows during the night, but actively wait for prey to swim by during the day (Campbell, 2012).  These burrows are found to be very useful for capturing prey (Campbell, 2012).  P.ciliata are known to be one of the fastest organisms inhibiting the ocean’s shallow waters giving them a huge advantage over their prey (Campbell, 2012). It has been found that P.ciliata can strike at speeds up to 30 mph (Campbell, 2012). Click this link and watch in slow motion how P.ciliata spear and capture their prey!


Without reproduction though these organisms would not be found.  An interesting article by Marea E. Hatziolos and Roy L. Caldwell explains the interesting ways P.ciliata reproduce. While reading the article I found it hard to grasp the fact that in an odd way we, as humans, use some of the same tactics that this species does to attract those they want to mate with.  P.ciliata use many different techniques to attract their mates (Hatziolos, 1983).  First off, you should know that this is the first known form of role reversal in mantis shrimp (Hatziolos, 1983). This type of role reversal is very uncommon and only found in certain species.  What is role reversal?  Role reversal is where the females of a certain species try their hardest to impress the males. Females do this by using many different techniques (Hatziolos, 1983).  These techniques to impress the male usually happen in a certain pattern and can take up to twenty minutes or longer (Hatziolos, 1983).


Wow, after hearing all of these interesting facts you must be thinking it would be awesome to keep one of these organisms as a pet right? Well you can! I found that not many stores sell P.ciliata, but few do. Click this link to go to the pet place if you are interested buying one today . Warning though, because of their strong appendages, P. ciliata are known to break through glass tanks even if the glass is double layered.  They are also a bit pricey, but they are definitely worth it!  Hope you decided to check out the link above and really consider adopting one of these amazing crustaceans.

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