Scolecithricella minor (Brady, 1883)
Body opaque, swimming legs with a yellow tint, eye ruby-red.
The exopodite of P1 in females with 2 lateral spines, rostrum has the shape of a bifurcate plate, does not carry filaments or projections.
Head fused with the thorax, the 4th and 5th thoracic segments separate. The top of the head from side view is widely rounded and strongly arched. The posterior corners of the last thoracic segment form an obtuse angle. Abdomen is very small and thin, 4 times shorter than the cephalothorax. A1 reach the posterior margin of the genital segment. Rostrum consists of a bifurcate plate with sharp tips of the rami. Exopodite of P1 with only 2 lateral spines (spine is absent on the 1st segment).
P5 leaf-shaped, 1-segmented, with a very short apical spine and a longer serrated lateral spine on the inner edge, and also a very short small spine on the outer side of the segment.
Longer A1, which reach the 4th abdominal segment, head less arched. Rostrum with shorter and wider branches. P5 longer than the abdomen. The left P5 with a rudimentary endopodite, the distal segment of the exopodite spike-shaped. The distal segment of the right leg plate-shaped, the second segment of the basipodite with a small projection on the inner edge (rudimentary endopodite).
v. orientalis (North Pacific, Sea of Japan, Sea of Okhotsk, Bering Sea. Does not go beyond the Southern Chukchi)
P5 in females with a slightly curved and elongated distal segment. The outer lateral spine is shifted toward the apical spine.
v. occidentalis (North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean with adjacent seas)
P5 in females with a short and rounded distal segment. The distance between the apical and outer lateral spine is equal to the distance between the last and the proximal end of the segment.
Female: 1,08-1,70 mm
Male: 1,20-1,46 mm
Ecology and Distribution
Arctic ocean and adjacent seas, North Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Gulf of Guinea. Wide-spread and very common in the North Pacific: Sea of Japan, Sea of Okhotsk, Bering Sea
Oceanic epi- to bathypelagic species