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Calanopia elliptica

Dana (1849)

Download a fact sheet for Calanopia elliptica (PDF 369KB)


Phylum Arthropoda
Subphylum Crustacea
Class Maxillopoda
Subclass Copepoda
Order Calanoida
Family Pontellidae
Genus Calanopia
Species elliptica


  • Female: 1.70 - 2.00 mm
  • Male: 1.80 - 1.90 mm

Distinguishing characteristics

  • Form of urosome somites
  • Form of P5
  • Male urosome somite 2 right side distal border with well defined tooth


  • Maxilliped with apical part 5 segmented
  • P5 terminal segment of left exopod with a pad of fine hairs, pointed at distal end with 3 seta on the outer margin & a seta on the posterior side
  • Flattened margin of the right exopodite segment 1 produced into 3 strong, blunt teeth, while the claw-like second segment has 3 small pointed teeth


  • Maxilliped with apical part 5 segmented
  • Prosome nearly twice as long as the urosome
  • Prosome points long
  • P5 asymmetrical, left leg longer, each limb uniramous of 4 segments
  • Urosome somite 2 as long as genital somite
  • Caudal rami nearly 3 times as long as broad


  • Epipelagic, mesopelagic
  • Coastal and oceanic; subtropical and tropical
  • Indian and Pacific Oceans; confirmed for Atlantic off Georgia, USA


  • This copepod has been reported as part of several plankton communities, but little is known about its ecology


  • Bradford-Grieve, J. M., (1999). The marine fauna of New Zealand: pelagic calanoid copepoda: Bathypontiidae, Arietellidae, Augaptilidae, Heterorhabdidae, Lucicutiidae, Metridinidae, Phyllopodidae, Centropagidae, Pseudodiaptomidae, Temoridae, Candaciidae, Pontellidae, Sulcanidae, Acartiidae, Tortanidae. National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, Wellington, New Zealand.
  • Razouls C., de Bovée F., Kouwenberg J. et Desreumaux N., 2005-2009. Diversity and Geographic Distribution of Marine Planktonic Copepods. Available at