Antenna 2 about half the body length. Segment bearing pereiopod 1 fused with the cephalon. Head with three conical tubercles, one medio-frontal and two large, lateral ones behind it. Middle segment of the pereion much broader, nearly quadrate, with lateral projections at its corners; longer than the cephalon and anterior pereional segments together. Pereiopods 1 to 4 relatively sparsely setose; pereiopods 5 to 7 short, stout and adapted for clinging. Female pleonal segments with dorsal tubercles. Anterior pleonal segments with five conical tubercles; middle segment with a pair of very large tubercles in the centre and three smaller ones near the posterior border, posterior pleonal segments with a keel. Pleotelson tapering. Middle pereional segment in male smooth.
Female up to about 6 mm body length; males up to 3 mm. Colour brownish, with darker patches.
Sublittoral, down to 360 metres.
Norway, east to the Kattegat, between Orkney and Shetlands and in the Mediterranean.
One other species of Arcturella is recorded off the west coasts of the British Isles: Arcturella damnoniensis (Stebbing, 1874). This species has a single large process in the centre of the middle pereional segment.