Crinoid and Squat Lobster (#42A)
This Squat Lobster is on the defensive, holding its claws up toward the perceived threat. This view shows one way to tell that the name "Squat Lobster" is a misnomer-- the lack of a tail, which all lobsters have, but crabs don't. The "lobster" part of its common name is probably due to the similarities in the long chelipeds (arms) to the true lobsters.

For divers: the photos shown here are of a few common commensals found on crinoids, but there are many other creatures that may serve as hosts to small but fascinating animals. Try looking closely at sea fans, starfish, sea cucumbers, or sea urchins the next time you dive-- but look very, very closely, or you'll likely be fooled by their disguises!

Identification of Squat Lobster:
Allogalathea elegans

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