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Gnathiid isopod.jpg
Male (left), female (upper right), praniza (lower right)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Malacostraca
Order: Isopoda
Suborder: Cymothoida
Family: Gnathiidae
Leach, 1814

The Gnathiidae are a family of isopod crustaceans. They occur in a wide range of depths, from the littoral zone to the deep sea. The adults are associated with sponges and may not feed.[1] The juvenile form is known as a 'praniza' larva, and it is a temporary parasite of marine fish.[1]

Taxonomy in the family relies on male characters, such that females and juveniles cannot be reliably identified.[1] The family contains 182 species,[2] divided among the following genera:[3]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Richard Brusca, Vania R. Coelho & Stefano Taiti (2001). "Suborder Gnathiidae [sic]". Guide to the Coastal Marine Isopods of California. Tree of Life Web Project. Retrieved August 28, 2010. 
  2. ^ Jörundar Svavarsson (2006). "New species of Gnathiidae (Crustacea, Isopoda, Cymothoida) from seamounts off northern New Zealand" (PDF). Zootaxa. 1173: 39–56. 
  3. ^ WoRMS (2010). M. Schotte; C. B. Boyko; N. L. Bruce; G. C. B. Poore; S. Taiti; G. D. F. Wilson, eds. "Gnathiidae". World Marine, Freshwater and Terrestrial Isopod Crustaceans database. World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved August 28, 2010.