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Haeckel Copepoda Sapphirina darwinii.jpg
Sapphirina darwinii with egg cases
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Maxillopoda
Subclass: Copepoda
Order: Poecilostomatoida
Family: Sapphirinidae
Genus: Sapphirina
J. Thompson, 1830

Sapphirina, also called the sea sapphires,[1] is a genus of parasitic copepod, containing the following species:[2]

Various species of male Sapphirina shine in different hues, from bright gold to deep blue. This is partially due to structural coloration in which microscopic layers of crystal plates inside their cells which are separated by minute distances, and these distances equal the same wavelength of the corresponding color of their "shine".[3] The females are translucent, as are the males when they are not shining.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Rebecca Helm (February 27, 2014). "Sea Sapphire: The most beautiful animal you’ve never seen". livescience. Retrieved March 31, 2014. 
  2. ^ T. Chad Walter & Geoff Boxshall (2010). T. Chad Walter & Geoff Boxshall, ed. "Sapphirina Thompson J., 1830". World Copepoda database. World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved October 28, 2010. 
  3. ^ Rebecca Helm (February 20, 2014). "The most beautiful animal you’ve never seen". Deep Sea News. Retrieved March 1, 2014.