Epactophanes richardi is morphologically a variable small species, having a slender and vermiform body.

Key characteristics

The exopod in the first leg has three segments, while the endopod is 2-segmented. The legs 2–4 has small endopods. The operculum has 6–10 pointed spines, but there may also be 3–4 large spines (Norwegian specimens have 2–8 spines). The caudal ramus is almost twice as long as wide, however this character varies as well. The inner margin of the caudal ramus is naked. The antennule consists of 6–7 segments (Norwegian specimens have 7 segments).

Female: Length 0.29–0.49 mm

Male: Length 0.40–0.45 mm

Ecology and distribution

Except for the southernmost parts, Epactophanes richardi has a scattered distribution throughout the country, including the Svalbard archipelago. It is a tolerant, cosmopolitan and cold stenotherm species, which is found in various types of habitats including springs, lakes, ponds, caves, rock pools, tree holes, soil and litter. There are records from sealevel and up to 876 m a.s.l.