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Characteristics, distribution and ecology
Taxonomische classification
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Streets, 1871

Antennular plate with four strong spines, in a quadrangle. Third maxilliped without exopod. Abdominal somites smooth, without transverse groove.
Colour: carapace brownish or bluish green, almost uniform or slightly, irregularly mottled. Antennae with basal segments greenish, flagella bluish green. Whitish transverse uninterrupted, bands along posterior margin of all abdominal somites very distinct because they have a dark band in front and just behind them.

Type locality of P. gracilis: "Gulf of Tehuantepec, Mexico". Holotype in ANSP (not located in 1989).
Type locality of P. brevipes and P. paessleri: "Mazatlan", Mexico. The male syntype specimen from this locality in ZMH, no. 8074, is chosen by Holthuis and Villalobos (1961: 265) as the lectotype of both Palinurus brevipes Pfeffer, 1881 and Palinurus paessleri Pfeffer, 1897.
Type locality of P. martensii: "sulle coste Pacifiche del Darien" ( = region of Golfo de San Miguel, Pacific coast of Panama; see E. Festa, 1909: 12-53, map). Syntypes in MZT no. Cr.1185.

Geographical Distribution:
Eastern Pacific from Baja California (Mexico) to Paita (Peru), and the Galápagos Islands.

Habitat and Biology:
Inhabits shallow coastal waters (0 to 18 m); among rocks and in cracks and crevices. The animals are nocturnal.

Maximum total body length 32 cm (males) and 30 cm (females); carapace length 1 to 13 cm (males), and 1 to 12 cm (females).

Interest to Fisheries:
The species is fished for commercially throughout its range and is sold in local markets. It is taken with trammel nets, by hand or with lobster pots.

Green spiny lobster (Panulirus gracilis)