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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Cladus: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Superclassis: Multicrustacea
Classis: Malacostraca
Subclassis: Eumalacostraca
Superordo: Eucarida
Ordo: Decapoda
Subordo: Pleocyemata
Infraordo: Brachyura
Sectio: Eubrachyura
Subsectio: Heterotremata
Superfamilia: Majoidea

Familia: Inachidae
Genus: Achaeopsis
Species: A. spinulosa

Achaeopsis spinulosa, the hotlips spider crab, is a species of crab in the family Inachidae, found only around the South African coast. It is the only species in the genus Achaeopsis.[1]

Distribution

The crab is found from False Bay to Durban, subtidally to 43 metres (141 ft). It is endemic to this region.
Description
close-up of the mouthparts of the hotlips spider crab

Achaeopsis spinulosa is commonly known as the hotlips spider crab because of the vivid red marking around its mouth. It is a small spider crab with relatively long but quite sturdy legs. It may grow to 70 millimetres (2.8 in) across. Its carapace is rounded, tapering to a blunt tip. Its pincers are raggedly striped in white and red.[2]
Ecology

The crab decorates its body with sponges, hydroids, or algae, improving its camouflage. It is seldom seen without some form of decoration. It is often found among striped anemones and on sea fans.
References

Peter K. L. Ng; Danièle Guinot; Peter J. F. Davie (2008). "Systema Brachyurorum: Part I. An annotated checklist of extant Brachyuran crabs of the world" (PDF). Raffles Bulletin of Zoology. 17: 1–286. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-06.
G. M. Branch; M. L. Branch; C. L. Griffiths; L. E. Beckley (2010). Two Oceans: a Guide to the Marine Life of Southern Africa. ISBN 978-1-77007-772-0.

Images

Biology Encyclopedia

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