BranchiopodaCollection Highlights | Updated 4 years ago Triops australiensis Image copyright of WA Museum Branchiopods (meaning ‘gill feet’ – their legs are the primary respiratory organ) are small crustaceans inhabiting many of the freshwater and saline inland water bodies of Australia. They are well adapted to temporary water bodies, as most species have eggs resistant to drying. The eggs hatch very quickly and population explosions can occur within a few days after rain. There are three distinct orders within the class: The Anostraca (fairy shrimps), Notostraca (shield shrimps), and the Diplostraca (clam shrimps and water fleas). Crustacea Section View the discussion thread.