BIOTIC Species Information for Pagurus bernhardus
Researched byMorvan Barnes Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byThis information is not refereed
Scientific namePagurus bernhardus Common nameA hermit crab
MCS CodeS1457 Recent Synonyms

PhylumCrustacea Subphylum
Superclass ClassEumalacostraca
SubclassEucarida OrderDecapoda
SuborderPleocyemata FamilyPaguridae
GenusPagurus Speciesbernhardus

Additional Information
Taxonomy References Hayward et al., 1996, Howson & Picton, 1997, Hayward & Ryland, 1995b,
General Biology
Growth formArticulate
Feeding methodSurface deposit feeder
Active suspension feeder
Environmental positionEpifaunal
Typical food typesOrganic detritus, carrion HabitFree living
BioturbatorNot relevant FlexibilityNone (< 10 degrees)
FragilityIntermediate SizeSmall-medium(3-10cm)
HeightNot researched Growth RateNot Researched
Adult dispersal potential1km-10km DependencyCommensal with/on/in
SociabilitySolitary Host forSea anemones.
General Biology Additional Information
Biology References Gerlach et al., 1976, Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Hazlett, 1981, Fish & Fish, 1996, Crothers & Hayeard, 2004, Ingle, 1993,
Distribution and Habitat
Distribution in Britain & IrelandFound on all British and Irish coasts.
Global distributionFound throughout north-west Europe from the coasts of Sweden to northern Scotland, western Ireland and as far south as Portugal, and also in the north-western Atlantic off the coasts of Canada.
Biogeographic rangeTemperate. Depth rangeFrom MTL to 140 m, seldom down to 500 m
MigratoryNon-migratory / Resident   
Distribution Additional Information

Substratum preferencesBedrock
Large to very large boulders
Under boulders
Coarse clean sand
Fine clean sand
Gravelley sand
Physiographic preferencesOpen coast
Offshore seabed
Strait / sound
Enclosed coast / Embayment
Biological zoneMid Eulittoral
Lower Eulittoral
Sublittoral Fringe
Upper Infralittoral
Lower Infralittoral
Upper Circalittoral
Lower Circalittoral
Circalittoral Offshore
Wave exposureExposed
Moderately Exposed
Very Sheltered
Tidal stream strength/Water flowField unresearched
SalinityFull (30-40 psu)
Habitat Preferences Additional Information
Distribution References Hayward et al., 1996, NBN, 2002, JNCC, 1999, Picton & Costello, 1998, Bookhout, 1964, Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Crothers & Hayeard, 2004, Ingle, 1993,
Reproduction/Life History
Reproductive typeGonochoristic
Developmental mechanismPlanktotrophic
Reproductive SeasonAll year Reproductive LocationAs adult
Reproductive frequencyAnnual episodic Regeneration potential No
Life span6-10 years Age at reproductive maturity1 year
Generation timeNot researched Fecundity10,000 to 20,000
Egg/propagule size0.5-1 mm Fertilization typeInternal
Larval/Juvenile dispersal potential1km-10km Larval settlement periodMarch to June
Duration of larval stage11-30 days   
Reproduction Preferences Additional Information
Reproduction References Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Hazlett, 1981, Fish & Fish, 1996, Elwood & Stewart, 1987, Lancaster, 1990, Tillin et al., 2006,
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