Like 41 other calanoid copepods, Acartia tonsa, are capable of inducing embryonic quiescence when experiencing unfavorable environmental conditions. The ecdysone-signaling cascade is known to have a key function in developmental processes like embryogenesis and molting of arthropods, including copepods. We examined the role of ecdysteroid-phosphate phosphatase (EPPase), ecdysone receptor (EcR), ß fushi tarazu transcription factor 1 (ßFTZ-F1), and the ecdysteroid-regulated early gene E74 (E74), which represent different levels of the ecdysone-signaling cascade in our calanoid model organism. Progression of embryogenesis was monitored and hatching success determined to evaluate viability. Embryos that were induced quiescence before the gastrulation stage would stay in gastrulation during the rest of quiescence and exhibited a slower pace of hatching as compared to subitaneous embryos. In contrast, embryos developed further than gastrulation would stay in gastrulation or later stages during quiescence and showed a rapid pace in hatching after quiescence termination. Expression patterns suggested two peaks of the biological active ecdysteroids, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E). The first peak of 20E was expressed in concert with the beginning of embryogenesis originating from yolk-conjugated ecdysteroids, based on EPPase expression. The second peak is suggested to originate from de novo synthesized 20E around the limb bud stage. During quiescence, the expression patterns of EPPase, EcR, ßFTZ-F1, and E74 were either decreasing or not changing over time. This suggests that the ecdysone-signaling pathway play a key role in the subitaneous development of A. tonsa embryogenesis, but not during quiescence. The observation is of profound ecological and practical relevance for the dynamics of egg banks.