(De Man, 1881)
Lateral margin of carapace without teeth behind anterolateral tooth. Rostrum triangular, longer than wide; lateral margins entire.Antennular plate without stridulating organ. Posterior margin of abdominal pleura evenly sinuously rounded, without a deep and sudden concavity near the top.
Type locality of Cancer cassideus: "Bewohnt das Indische Meer". "Habitat in Mari Indico" "Zwischen dem Vorgebürge der guten Hoffnung und Indien im grossen Ozean, dreihundert grosse Seemeilen weit von irgend einem Lande". Depository of types unknown.
Type locality of Phyllamphion elegans: "har hjemme i det chinesiske Hav, hvor jeg dog kun en Gang har erholdt 3 Exemplarer, som fangedes met Slaebenaettet i nogle Miles Afstand fra Öen Luçon at Par Timer efter Solnedgang (d. 11. Juni 1846)" (has its home in the Chinese Sea, where I once obtained 3 specimens caught with a drag net at several miles off the island of Luzon, a few hours after sunset on 11 June 1846). Depository of syntypes unknown
Type locality of Araeosternus wieneckii: "Rat-Island near Benkulen (Sumatra)" ( = Pulau Tikus, S.W. coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, about 3°50'S 102°11'E) Holotype male in RMNH no. D 965.
Indo-West Pacific region: Arabian coast of Red Sea, East Africa (larvae), South Africa (Natal, juvenile), western Indian Ocean (larvae), Mauritius, Thailand, (Phuket Island), Japan (Ryukyu Islands), Philippines (larvae), Indonesia (Sumatra, Borneo), New Guinea (Kiriwina Islands), Solomon Islands (Savo Id.), Caroline Islands (Ifaluk), New Caledonia (larvae and juveniles), New Hebrides (larvae), Hawaiian Islands (Oahu, Hawaii, Maui), Tuamotu Islands (larvae and juveniles).
Habitat and Biology:
In shallow water (from 9 to 27 m) on coral reefs and in marine caves. Probably nocturnal. Larvae planktonic.
Maximum total body length about 20 cm, maximum carapace length about 8 cm. Body length usually around 10-14 cm.
Interest to Fisheries:
Very slight at present: the species is taken only occasionally, being too rare for a commercial fishery. It is taken by hand and sometimes gets entangled in gill nets. It has caught the attention of the tropical marine aquarium trade, but is too infrequently taken to be of great economic value. The only specimen so far reportedfrom Thailand, was offered for sale in a fancy glass case as a tourist souvenir.
There appears to be little doubt that the larvae described as Cancer cassideus and Phyllamphion elegans are those of the present species. If this is confirmed, the name of the species should change to Phyllamphion cassideus (Forster, 1782).