Image: Yabby Illustration

Yabby Illustration

Yabbies are crustaceans. They have three stages in their life cycle: egg - juvenile - adult.

Creator:
Andrew Howells
Rights:
© Australian Museum

Notes

Yabbies are crustaceans. They have three stages in their life cycle: egg - juvenile - adult.

Yabbies have large claws used for defence, holding food and digging. They have four pairs of walking legs and a long thick tail. To move through the water quickly, they flap their tail.

Yabbies live in streams, lakes, dams and ponds in south-eastern Australia. In the water, Yabbies hide under rocks and branches.

Yabbies eat algae, dead and decaying plants, plus fish and other animals that get too close.

Murray Cod, turtles, herons, water rats and humans are just some of the animals that like to eat Yabbies.

Yabbies breathe by using their gills to absorb oxygen from the water. They draw water under the back of their exoskeleton (hard shell), over their gills and out through a hole near their head.

When Yabbies breed, they lay eggs. The female protects her fertilised eggs with her tail flap and they are attached to her swimmerets until they hatch.

Yabbies moult their exoskeleton (hard shell) so they can grow. The exoskeleton peels off to reveal a new one underneath. Other animals that do this include spiders, crabs, and many insects.

Last Updated:

Tags wild, kids, illustration, yabby,