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Zoology Publications from Victoria University of Wellington—Nos. 78, 79 and 80



New Zealand's shallow water1 caridean fauna comprises species belonging to five families: Alpheidae Bate, 1888, Crangonidae Bate, 1888, Hippolytidae Bate, 1888, Ogyrididae Holthuis, 1955 and Palaemonidae Samouelle, 1819. Larvae of many of these shallow water species have now been described, although much of this information is yet to be published (see Wear 1985). The guide presented here summarises this knowledge. The larvae of New Zealand's offshore Caridea are, however, too poorly known to enable construction of a single, comprehensive key to their larvae. This guide is intended as a preliminary step toward such a key.

The first part of the guide comprises a list of characters which, taken in combination, distinguish caridean larvae from those of other decapods. Larvae of each of the five families are then similarly characterised. Genera or individual species within each family are considered in the form of a key or, in the case of the Hippolytidae, are briefly described.

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Records of the New Zealand caridean fauna, and data on egg size and number, were obtained from Yaldwyn (1954, 1959, 1960, 1971), Richardson & Yaldwyn (1958) and Hayashi & Miyake (1970). The lists of characters distinguishing larvae of the Caridea and of each family were based principally on Gurney's (1942) "Larvae of Decapod Crustacea" and the keys of Williamson (1957, 1982).

1 Defined as 0-20m after Yaldwyn (1959)