Field of Science

Name the Bug #29

I've been accused of swinging wildly between the easy and the impossible for these ID challenges. The last one was fairly easy, so I suppose it's time for the impossible:

To give a bit of a hand, the animal shown is a marine species of its phylum.

Attribution to follow.

Update: Identity available here. Figure from Pollock (1976).


  1. Tardigrade? Sure looks cute enough...

  2. ...but that's gonna be as far out on a limb as you'll get me. *over 1000 tiny, adorable species. sheesh.*

  3. Sadly, my first reaction was "There are marine tardigrades?". Hats off to anyone who gets this one to species

  4. Based on a very sketchy scan of the online literature - (because I have NO tardigrade books...) I'm going to have a stab at the order - Arthrotardigrada - based on the following clues: marine; 4 claws with digits; erm, cephalic appendages...? Basically that's all I got, folks. I'd have liked a close-up picture of its cloaca since that's a major clue...Someone's got to do better than that... Any takers for the next taxonomic level??
    Well done Christopher - this one's a monster. Look forward to your illumination.

  5. I knew immediately it was a Tardigrade, but as for any narrower than that I just don't have a clue.


  6. Styraconyxidae? Angursa, reads about right, does that count as slender for a tarsigrade? Tholoarctus and Lepoarctus are similar. Pleocola or Euclavarctus? No free piccies online.

    I am going to plump for Angursa antarctica because it appears to be a waterbear that is against bears.

    Considering no-one identified the last bug(loss) to species level I don't see how it could have been said to be easy. I am pretty sure that I had seen the plant before in the flesh and I didn't get the species.

  7. Styraconyxids have both sets of claws on long toes; this genus (I don't know if the illustration I've provided is detailed enough to distinguish the exact species) has only the distal claws on distinct toes. Just looking at Pleocola, though, it is very similar in overall appearance otherwise. I'll be putting up the details later today (hopefully; I ran out of time yesterday).


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