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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

Shore Bristletail Petrobius maritimus

The shore bristletail, also known as the shore springtail, derives its common name from the three long filaments extending from the tip of its abdomen. Its long body is well-camouflaged by drab-colored scales. It has long antennae and compound eyes that meet at the top of its head. The shore bristletail lives in rock crevices and feeds on detritus. It can move swiftly around the rocks using small spikes on its underside, called styles, to help it grip. When disturbed, it can leap small distances through the air using its abdomen to catapult it away from the rock.

Shore Bristletailzoom image
  • Subphylum Insecta
  • Length in (1 cm)
  • Habitat Rocky shores in the splash zone
  • Distribution British Isles excluding Ireland
Shore Bristletail habitat mapzoom image