Palinurus (crustacean)

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Temporal range: Albian–Recent
Palinurus elephas
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Malacostraca
Order: Decapoda
Suborder: Pleocyemata
Family: Palinuridae
Genus: Palinurus
Weber, 1795
Type species
Astacus elephas
Fabricius, 1787 [1]

See text

Palinurus is a genus of spiny lobsters in the family Palinuridae, native to the eastern Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea and western Indian Ocean. A 110-million-year-old fossil, recognisable as a member of the genus Palinurus, was discovered in a quarry in El Espinal in Mexico's Chiapas state in 1995 and named P. palaciosi.[2][3]


This is a complete list of extant species:[1][4]

Image Scientific name Common Name Distribution
Palinurus barbarae Groeneveld, Griffiths & van Dalsen, 2006[5] south of Madagascar
Palinurus charlestoni Forest & Postel, 1964 Cape Verde spiny lobster Cape Verde
Palinurus delagoae Barnard, 1926 Natal spiny lobster central Mozambique and southern Madagascar to the Eastern Cape, South Africa.
Palinurus elephas (Fabricius, 1787) common spiny lobster eastern Atlantic Ocean, from southern Norway to Morocco and the Azores, and in the Mediterranean Sea
Palinurus gilchristi Stebbing, 1900 southern spiny lobster South Africa and Madagascar.
Palinurus mauritanicus Gruvel, 1911 pink spiny lobster eastern Atlantic Ocean and the western Mediterranean Sea.


  1. ^ a b Lipke Holthuis (1991). FAO species catalogue Vol. 13: Marine lobsters of the world. FAO. Archived from the original on 2011-07-17.
  2. ^ Victoria Jaggard (May 3, 2007). "Oldest Lobster Fossil Found in Mexico". National Geographic News.
  3. ^ Francisco J. Vega; Pedro García-Barrera; María del Carmen Perrilliat; Marco A. Coutiño; Ricardo Mariño-Pérez (2006). "El Espinal, a new plattenkalk facies locality from the Lower Cretaceous Sierra Madre Formation, Chiapas, southeastern Mexico" (PDF). Revista Mexicana de Ciencias Geológicas. 23 (3): 323–333.
  4. ^ "Palinurus Weber, 1795". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
  5. ^ John Yeld (September 11, 2006). "Scientists find new giant lobster species". Cape Argus. p. 3.