Phyllosoma is the larval stage of lobsters. The name is derived from the Greek words phyllon, leaf, and soma, body.
They are unusually large, flat, transparent and unique among crustacean larvae. It’s said to be the longest-lived larvae in the ocean and can span the entire Caribbean on its way to settle in Florida.
After passing through many phyllosoma stages, the larva goes through a final molt, shedding its long legs and wing-like body, transforming into a transparent postlarval lobster, called a puerulus, that migrates from offshore waters and settles into the shallow-water habitats.