Vernal Pool Life
Female Eastern Fairy Shrimp [Eubranchipus vernalis] Showing eggs in her brood pouch. Pa. 3-6-23. Fairy shrimp eggs are laid in vernal pools, but the eggs must fully dry out and then be inundate by water in order to hatch.
Female Eastern Fairy Shrimp [Eubranchipus vernalis], showing eggs in her brood pouch. Pa. 3-6-23
The elegance and beauty of Eastern Fairy Shrimp [Eubranchipus vernalis] . Pa. 3-6-23
A beautiful female Eastern Fairy Shrimp [Eubranchipus vernalis] notice her brood pouch is now full of eggs and is in constant motion [above and below], as this constant movement is a way of keeping the eggs oxygenated. Pa. 3-6-23.
Fairy Shrimp [Anostraca] with Marbled Salamander larvae.[Ambystoma opacum]. 2-10-23
Close up picture of a Fairy shrimp [Anostraca] with 10 week old Marbled salamander larva [Ambystoma opacum]. Pa. 2-10-23. You can see her brood pouch which appears empty, but if you look close you can just see her tiny eggs developing inside and it won't be too much longer that they will be more visible, as they grow in size.
10 week old Marbled Salamander larva [Ambystoma opacum] with Fairy Shrimp [Anostraca]. Pa. 2-10-23
Notice this Fairy Shrimp is carrying eggs in her brood pouch. Fairy Shrimp [Anostraca] are an important part of a healthy vernal pool ecosystem. Pa.. "They are crustaceans that live only in vernal pools and they filter bacteria, phytoplankton, protozoans and detritus. Female Fairy Shrimp produce several broods of encysted eggs which must dry and be re-submerged before they will hatch. The drought and cold resistant cyst can withstand ingestion by animals, may be blown by wind from a dry pool." From the excellent "Field Guide to the animals of Vernal pools by Leo P. Kenny And Matthew R. Burne. I always carry a copy with me in the field. Available through the Massachusetts Division of Fishers & Wildlife.
The amazing Fairy Shrimp [Anostraca]. Pa. 2-10-23. An excellent food source for many vernal pool creatures, including salamander larvae.