Chelicerata Vs. Crustacea

The horseshoe crab, scientific name Limulus polyphemus (Linnaeus, 1758), is part of the chelicerata subphylum not the crustacea. There is a species of this amongst the crustacean the collection here at the Manchester Museum, which is what lead me to research more into this subphylum.

Differences which set chelicerata apart from crustaceans include chelicerata having uniramous limbs where as crustaceans have biramous limbs. A uniramous limb comprises a single series of segments attached end-to-end. A biramous limb, however, branches into two, and each branch consists of a series of segments attached end-to-end.

Crustaceans have 6 pairs of legs whereas chelicerata have 6 pairs.

I have photographed our limulus polyphemus specimen below for anyone interested.



4 Comments Add yours

  1. Laavanya says:

    “Chelicerata also have antennae whereas crustaceans don’t.”
    Happened to stumble upon your page while researching for my essay. Don’t crustaceans have two pairs of antennae while chelicerates have no antennae?
    Nice blog btw!


  2. Tim says:

    Your information is wrong. Chelicerates have 4 pairs of legs and no antenna. Crustaceans have 2 pairs of antenna.


  3. jen says:

    Crustaceans have antennae whereas chelicerata do not.


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