Found in a small pool at the side of the road.
Pulled over at the side of the road on our trip to Death Valley to watch the Armagosa River catch the morning light, and my mom says "you've got to see this." In a large puddle dozens of little creatures are making swirls in the muddy water. Mom caught one in a paper cup. They're about an inch long. We assume they're some kind of fairy shrimp, thought that's only a guess.
Anostraca is one of the four orders of crustaceans in the class Branchiopoda; its members are also known as fairy shrimp. They are usually 6–25 mm (0.24–0.98 in) long (exceptionally up to 170 mm or 6.7 in). Most species have 20 body segments, bearing 11 pairs of leaf-like phyllopodia (swimming legs), and the body lacks a carapace. They live in vernal pools and hypersaline lakes across the world, including pools in deserts, in ice-covered mountain lakes and in Antarctica. They...