Queuing Behavior of Spiny Lobsters

  title={Queuing Behavior of Spiny Lobsters},
  author={William Frank Herrnkind},
  pages={1425 - 1427}
  • W. Herrnkind
  • Published 20 June 1969
  • Environmental Science
  • Science
Autumnal mass migrations of spiny lobsters, Panulirus argus, involve diurnal movements of thousands of individuals in single-file queues. Initiation, posture, and alignment of a queue can be effected entirely by tactile cues received through antennular inner rami, pereiopods, and antennae. Since spiny lobsters queue when deprived of shelter, this behavior may serve a defensive function. Specimens captured while migrating maintain the queue indoors for up to several weeks, whereas at other times… 

Mass Migration of Spiny Lobster, Panulirus argus (Crustacea: Palinuridae): Synopsis and Orientation

During autumnal mass migrations of spiny lobster in the northern Bahamas, large numbers move from the shallows to the areas fringing oceanic waters (e.g., the Gulf Stream). The phenomenon involves

Drag Reduction by Formation Movement in Spiny Lobsters

It is proposed that queuing behavior conserves energy and is a consequence of the evolutionary role of migration in this particular species.

Cooperative defence and other benefits among exposed spiny lobsters: inferences from group size and behaviour

The group size distributions of lobsters initially leaving dens and those observed moving in the open were statistically different from one another, indicating that group sizes at each of these steps in the migration are not simply the result of previous group sizes.


Information is presented to characterize homing, mass emigration, and orientation by spiny lobsters more fully in the field and evidence for a nonvisual mechanism operating by hydrodynamic cues is presented.

Daily movements and home range in mithrax spinosissimus (Majidae, Decapoda)†

Individuals of the spider crab Mithrax spinosissimus living in a canal in the Florida Keys were marked and their movements followed over a four‐month period, and extent of daily movement was inversely correlated with spider crab density.

Spatial dynamics in the social lobster Panulirus argus in response to diseased conspecifics

Results showed that avoid- ance is driven by the chemoreception of cues based in the urine, and the chemical cue alone was as effective as having a diseased lobster present and visible.

Collective defense by spiny lobster (Panulirus argus) against triggerfish (Balistes capriscus): effects of number of attackers and defenders

It was found that per capita mortality declined with lobster group size, but remained the same statistically whether there were two or five triggerfish, and Triggerfish interference may have played a role in reducing the effect of greater numbers of attackers.

Source and Specificity of Chemical Cues Mediating Shelter Preference of Caribbean Spiny Lobsters (Panulirus argus)

This study developed a relatively rapid test of shelter choice in a 5000-l laboratory flume that simulated flow conditions in the spiny lobster’s natural environment, and used it to examine the shelter preference of the animals in response to a variety of odorants, which demonstrated specificity in the cues mediating sheltering behavior.

Behavioral Ecology of Mobil Animals: Insights from In Situ Observations

In situ observations helped to refine behavioral ecological theory by testing whether humans display a relatively simple or sophisticated predatory response to varying densities of spiny lobster prey and contributed to knowledge of differential reproductive strategies, species invasions, and range extensions, as well as novel behaviors.



Richard of the Institute of Marine Science, University of Miami, Florida, for aid and facilities

  • I appreciate the assistance of Dr. R. Mariscal in preparation of the manuscript. Miss L. Spence prepared the illustrations
  • 1969

Animal Orientation and Navigation (Oregon

  • 1967

The technical assistance of I. Barrett, J. Edelin, and D. Lawless is acknowledged. Dr. D. Alling assisted with the statistical analyses