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Palinurus elephas   (Fabricius, 1787)

Common spiny lobster

Native range | All suitable habitat | Point map | Year 2100
This map was computer-generated and has not yet been reviewed.
Palinurus elephas   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Palinurus elephas
Picture by Coudre, Christian

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | CoL | ITIS | WoRMS

Malacostraca | Decapoda | Palinuridae

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Benthic; depth range 5 - 200 m (Ref. 85369), usually 10 - 70 m (Ref. 4).  Subtropical; 12°C - 16°C (Ref. 114562), preferred 11°C (Ref. 107945); 61°N - 27°N, 32°W - 36°E (Ref. 114562)

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Introductions

Eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean: from Norway to Morocco.

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm 10.0, range 7 - 8 cm Max length : 50.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 441); common length : 40.0 cm BASL male/unsexed; (Ref. 441); max. reported age: 15 years (Ref. 85318)

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Traditionally caught by traps, pots and sometimes by hand (e.g., diving and spearing; Refs. 441, 85369), but these gears were eventually replaced with trammel nets (Ref. 85369). Minimum depth from Ref. 4. Occurs at depths between shore to 200 m, on rocky bottoms and coralligenous substrates where there are lots of protective holes and micro-caves. Adults may be solitary, in pairs or in small groups. Highly omnivorous and preys on hard-shelled bottom dwelling organisms, i.e., mollusks, echinoderms and crustaceans. They are generalists and opportunistic feeders depending on the abundance of benthic organisms (Ref. 85369). Ovigerous females are observed from September to October and February to March (Ref. 4). Breeds once a year between June and October. Larger females mate and lay eggs earlier during breeding season while smaller females spawn towards the end (Ref. 85364).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Breeds once a year between June and October. Larger females mate and lay eggs earlier during breeding season while smaller females spawn towards the end (Ref. 85364).

Main reference References | Coordinator | Collaborators

Holthuis, L.B. 1991. (Ref. 4)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 115185)

  Vulnerable (VU) (A2bd)

CITES status (Ref. 108899)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

Human uses

Fisheries: commercial
FAO(fisheries: production) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

Internet sources

BHL | BOLD Systems | CISTI | DiscoverLife | FAO(fisheries: ; publication : search) | GenBank (genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | GOBASE | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | ispecies | PubMed | Scirus | Tree of Life | uBio | uBio RSS | Wikipedia (Go, Search) | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969): 7.7 - 19.6, mean 11.9 (based on 808 cells).
Vulnerability (Ref. 71543)
Moderate vulnerability (40 of 100)
Price category (Ref. 80766)
Very high