About Barnacles

A barnacle is a type of arthropod belonging to infraclass Cirripedia in the subphylum Crustacea, and is hence related to crabs and lobsters. Barnacles are exclusively marine, and tend to live in shallow and tidal waters, typically in erosive settings. They are sessile (non-motile) suspension feeders, and have two nektonic (active swimming) larval stages. Around 1,220 barnacle species are currently known. The name 'Cirripedia' is Latin, meaning 'curl-footed'. Barnacles are encrusters, attaching themselves permanently to a hard substrate. The most common, 'acorn barnacles' (Sessilia), are sessile, growing their shells directly onto the substrate. The order Pedunculata ('goose barnacles' and others) attach themselves by means of a stalk. Most barnacles are suspension feeders; they dwell continually in their shell which is usually constructed of six plates and reach into the water column with modified legs.

Contributions by Stemonitis, Crustaceanguy, and Smith609.

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