Marine Animal Encyclopedia
Deep-sea Red Prawn Acanthephyra pelagica
In the low light levels of the deep ocean, red appears black, making the deep-sea red prawn invisible to potential predators. Its hard outer casing, or exoskeleton, is thinner and more flexible than that of shallow-water crustaceans, which prevents collapse under the immense water pressure of the ocean depths. The flesh of the deep-sea red prawn is oily to aid buoyancy. It uses its first three pairs of limbs to feed on small copepods. The remaining five pairs of limbs, the pereiopods, are used for locomotion. Gills attached to the tops of the deep-sea red prawn's legs are used for respiration.