Remipedes (REM-mih-peeds) are wormlike crustaceans that lack both color and eyes and measure 0.35 to 1.8 inches (9 to 45 millimeters) long. They have a short, distinct head and, depending on species, a long body trunk with 10 to 32 segments. Most of the trunk segments have a pair of flattened, paddlelike limbs directed out from the sides. The head has a pair of thread-like sensory processors and two pairs of antennae. The second pair of antennae is long and feathery.
The mouthparts are found inside the head. They include three pairs of jawlike appendages: a pair of mandibles (MAN-dih-bulz), or biting mouthparts, and two pairs of maxillae (mack-SIH-lee). The first pair of maxillae is tipped with fanglike projections. The fangs inject an unknown chemical that paralyzes and kills prey. The second pair of maxillae is followed by a nearly identical pair of mouthparts called maxillipeds (mack-SIH-leh-pehds). The fingerlike maxillipeds are actually attached to the first trunk segment, which is tightly joined to the head.
Animal Life ResourceMollusks, Crustaceans, and Related SpeciesRemipedes: Remipedia - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Remipedes And People, No Common Name (speleonectes Gironensis): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CONSERVATION STATUS