by Jan Parmentier



Polyphemus pediculus is a carnivore, preying upon small animals, mostly other water fleas. Easy to discern, even without a magnifier because of its big, complex eyes. A carnivore needs these eyes to detect its small, moving prey.

Polyphemus has four pairs of feet with spines, the first pair is used to grab its prey. The shell forms a brood pouch, there is a long spine at the end of the body. The picture shows the birth of two young, rapidly swimming away. Water fleas are eaten by many other animals, among them fish and newts.



back to the first page about Water fleas
Podon and Evadne
The giant water flea
More water fleas, including Polyphemus, photographed in dark field illumination.

© Jan Parmentier 1999

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