Labidocera brunescens (Czernjavsky, 1868)

Labidocera brunescens imageSynonyms: None.

Common names: None.

Order (Scientific): CALANOIDA.

Family (Scientific): PONTELLIDAE.

Taxonomic descriptions: One of three species of the Pontellidae family in the Black Sea, Sea of Azov, and salt coastal wetlands. The head is ovoid without lateral hooks and with one pair of dorsal ocular lenses. This is a middle sized rather transparent copepod. The length of the females is 2.0-2.1 mm and of the males 1.65-1.70 mm.

Labidocera brunescens arealIUCN Status:
    World level:
    Black Sea Regional level: EN
    Subregion level: EN (Ukrainian sector)

Distribution: Coastal waters of the Black Sea, the Sea of Azov, coastal lagoons and limans, Mediterranean Sea, Atlantic Ocean.

Habitats type, Critical habitats, Limiting factors: Critical habitats. Limiting factors: A neustonic species inhabiting the surface layer of water 0-5 cm. Wintering eggs are laid on the bottom. The limiting factors are the pollution of the water surface and bottom hypoxia.


Population trends: A reduction of 60-70% over the last 10 years, according to direct observations.

Threats: The pollution of the water surface and bottom hypoxia.

Conservation measures taken: None.

Conservation measures proposed: Enter in the Black Sea Red Data Book. Reduce Black Sea pollution.


  1. Newell, G.E. and Newell, R.C., 1966. Marine Plankton, a practical guide. London, Hutchinson Educational, pp. 221, (in English).
  2. Dolgopol’skaya, M.A., 1969. Otryad calanoida G.O. Sars (Order Calanoida G.O. Sars), In: Opredelitel’ fauny Chernogo I Azovskogo morey (A key to Black Sea and the Sea of Azov fauna)., Kiev, Naukova dumka, II, p. 34-48, (in Russian).
  3. Zaitsev, Yu.P., 1971. Marine Neustonology. Jerusalem: Israel Program for Scientific Translations, pp. 207, (in English).
  4. Zaitsev, Yu. and Mamaev, V., 1997. Marine Biological Diversity in the Black Sea. A study of Change and Decline. New York: United Nations Publications, pp. XV, 208, (in English).

Compiled by Yu. Zaitsev.