The colorful mantis shrimp Gonodactylus smithii. Researchers compare mantis shrimp to "heavily armored caterpillars."
Peacock Mantis Shrimp
The peacock mantis shrimp Odontodactylus scyllarus from the Indo-Pacific boasts strong, hammer-like claws.
Peacock mantis shrimp are solitary hunters, capable of swinging their claws with a force equal to a .22 caliber bullet.
Mantis Shrimp with Eggs
A mantis shrimp guards a raft of pink eggs.
Peacock mantis shrimp are known for their complex visual system.
Peacock mantis shrimp are highly territorial.
A view of the colorful peacock mantis shrimp body.
Peacock mantis shrimp are not shrimp, but their shrimp-like appearance (and tendency to attack like a praying mantis) gave them their name.
Stephanie Pappas, Live Science Contributor
Stephanie Pappas is a contributing writer for Live Science. She covers the world of human and animal behavior, as well as paleontology and other science topics. Stephanie has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of South Carolina and a graduate certificate in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has ducked under a glacier in Switzerland and poked hot lava with a stick in Hawaii. Stephanie hails from East Tennessee, the global center for salamander diversity. Follow Stephanie on Google+.