amphipodaAmphipoda is an order of malacostracan crustaceans with no carapace and generally with laterally compressed bodies. The name amphipoda refers to the different forms of appendages, unlike isopods, where all the thoracic legs are alike. Of the 7,000 species, 5,500 are classified into one suborder, Gammaridea. The remainder are divided into two or three further suborders. Amphipods range in size from 1 to 340 millimetres (0.039 to 13 in) and are mostly detritivores or scavengers. They live in almost all aquatic environments; 750 species live in caves and the order also includes terrestrial animals and sandhoppers such as Talitrus saltator.

amphipodThe animation above shows a bacterium living on the diatom of an amphipod.

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