Spotted Bumblebee Shrimp – Gnathophyllum elegans

The Spotted Bumblebee Shrimp is a species in the order of the Decapoda and thus belongs to the subphylum of the Crustacea.

Spotted Bumblebee Shrimp - Gnathophyllum elegans crustacea species diving canary islands atlantic ocean canaries
Spotted Bumblebee Shrimp – Gnathophyllum elegans


Gnathophyllum elegans has a elongated body. While its head and arms with scissors have a milky white colour, the body is dark with many yellow dots. The eyes are clearly visible and have a white colour with black pupils. The legs, on the other hand, are blue. They reach a maximum length of 3cm.

Habitat and Distribution

The Spotted Bumblebee Shrimp lives on rocky ground down to a depth of 40m. When diving in the Canaries you can observe them from time to time. In addition, their distribution area spreads across the Mediterranean Sea and the eastern and south-eastern Atlantic.


There is very little information on the life style of Gnathophyllum elegans. They are opaque and accordingly night active. I have only discovered it solitaire so far.
Their diet consists of the suction feet of starfish and sea urchins.
They also fluoresce.

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