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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Lemon Tadpole Shrimp - Lepidurus lemmoni

Native Species

Global Rank: G4
State Rank: SNR

Agency Status


External Links

General Description
This species of tadpole shrimp (order Notostraca) is a member of the crustacean class Branchiopoda. Their large, hardened carapace (shell) makes them look like a fat tadpole swimming through the water or crawling along the bottom. They are important components of many freshwater and saline intermittent or temporary wetlands (Dodson and Frey 2001 and Brendonck et al. 2008). These animals are especially common in seasonal wetlands, where populations are maintained by banks of resting eggs that may remain dormant and can survive drying periods of decades or longer (Brendonck 1996).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Nuchal organ is behind a line drawn between posterior apices of eyes; 30 to 35
body rings, 50 to 78 pairs of legs; caudal lamina subrectangular or truncate, 0.1 to 0.3 times length of carapace; sulcus spines acute, 1.3 to 1.5 times as long as broad, 2 to 5 small spines separating larger spines (Rogers and Fugate 2001).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 1

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Brendonck, L, D.C Rogers, J Olesen, S Weeks, and W.R Hoeh. 2008. Global Diversity of Large Branchiopods (crustacea: Branchiopoda) in Freshwater. Hydrobiologia. 595.1 167-176.
    • Brendonck, L. 1996. Diapause, Quiescence, Hatching Requirements: What We Can Learn from Large Freshwater Branchiopods (crustacea: Branchiopoda: Anostraca, Notostraca, Conchostraca). Hydrobiologia: the International Journal of Aquatic Sciences. 320 p. 85-97
    • Dodson, S.I. and D.G. Frey. 2001. In: Thorp, V.H. and A.P. Covich. Ecology and classification of North American Freshwater Invertebrates. Academic Press, San Diego, CA.
    • Rogers, C.H. and M. Fugate. 2001. Branchinecta hiberna, a new species of fairy shrimp (Crustacea: Anostraca) from western North America. Western North American Naturalist, 61(1): 11-18.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • B.R. Hossack, R.L. Newell and D.C. Rogers. 2010. Branchiopods (Anostraca, Notostraca) from protected areas of western Montana. Northwest Science. 81(1): 52-57.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Lemon Tadpole Shrimp"
  • Additional Sources of Information Related to "Fairy Shrimp"
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Citation for data on this website:
Lemon Tadpole Shrimp — Lepidurus lemmoni.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from