Organizing 1000's of Known Species
With over 1,000 known species, tardigrades are classified based on their physical characteristics, and can be sorted into different categories such as Class, Order, Family, or Genus.
The use of a classification system helps to organize and categorize the different species, making it easier to identify and study the various species of tardigrades found around the world.
By filtering tardigrades based on these categories, researchers and enthusiasts can gain a better understanding of the diversity and characteristics of these fascinating creatures.
Categorized By Class
Class is the broadest category, and includes all tardigrades that share certain general characteristics, such as their segmented bodies and clawed limbs.
Tardigrades belong to the class Eutardigrada, which includes all known species of tardigrades
Categorized By Order
Order is a more specific category, and includes species that share certain physical traits such as the number of claws on their legs or the shape of their mouthparts.
Some examples of tardigrade orders include Apochela, which includes species with no claws on their legs, and Parachela, which includes species with claws on their legs.
Categorized By Family
Family is an even more specific category, and includes species that share even more physical characteristics.
For example, the family Milnesiidae includes tardigrades with smooth bodies and long, slender claws, while the family Macrobiotidae includes tardigrades with short, stubby claws and a distinctive egg-shaped body.
Categorized By Genus
Genus is the most specific category, and includes species that are closely related and share many physical characteristics.
Some examples of tardigrade genera include Milnesium, which includes species with a smooth body and long, slender claws, and Macrobiotus, which includes species with a round body and short, stubby claws.