Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK

Research Article

First records of the oriental prawn Palaemon macrodactylus (Decapoda: Caridea), an alien species in European waters, with a revised key to British Palaemonidae

Christopher W.  Ashelby a1c1, Tim M.  Worsfold a1 and Charles H.J.M.  Fransen a2
a1 Unicomarine Ltd, 7a Diamond Centre, Works Road, Letchworth, Hertfordshire, SG6 1LW, UK
a2 Nationaal Natuurhistorisch Museum, Postbus 9517, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands

Article author query
ashelby cw   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
worsfold tm   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
fransen ch   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


This paper details the first recorded instance of the prawn Palaemon macrodactylus in Europe, at the Orwell estuary, Suffolk. The species is native to north-east Asia, including Japan and Korea, and has previously been introduced to other areas outside its natural range. Records of the abundance of caridean species, obtained from routine benthic trawl samples in the Stour and Orwell estuaries, provide a summary of P. macrodactylus' habitat preference in reduced-salinity waters. Consistent catches and records of ovigerous females provide evidence for the stability of the Orwell population. A revised key to British Palaemonidae is also provided.

(Received January 5 2004)
(Accepted July 28 2004)

c1 e-mail: