Athropoda is a phylum of segmented invertebrates which have jointed legs. This phylum includes arachnids (e.g. spiders, mites and scorpions), crustaceans (e.g. crayfish, prawns and barnacles), insects (e.g. bugs, beetles and dragonflies) and myriapods (e.g. millipedes and centipedes). Over 80% of invertebrates are grouped into the single phylum Arthropoda.
The arthropods are the largest assemblage of species in the animal kingdom. Arthropods generally posses a chitin-protein exoskeleton which is divided into segments of plates and cylinders. Segmented body parts, rather than body deformation, allows athropods to move. Arthropods also moult and shed their exoskeleton as they grow in size. The number of body and appendage segments across athropod groups varies greatly, but they generally have a form of head, thorax and abdomen.
Arachnida—spiders and other arachnids
Crustacea—crabs, crayfish and other crustaceans
Insecta—dragonflies, mayflies and other insects
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Last updated: 12 April 2017
This page should be cited as:
Arthropoda, WetlandInfo 2013, Department of Environment and Science, Queensland, viewed 14 December 2018, .