Structure of Feeding Palps and Feeding Behavior of the Spionid Polychaete Polydora Polybranchia
The feeding palps of Polydora polybranchia have well developed ciliary food grooves. Along the grooves are numerous mucus glands and ciliated papillae (sensory organs). The distribution and abundance of both mucus glands and ciliary papillae on the feeding palps vary. In general, the largest papillae are located on the distal part of the palp where there are a few mucus glands; in the mid region there are sensory papillae of different sizes and abundant mucus glands; and in the basal region there are neither papillae nor mucus glands. Laboratory observations indicated that feeding behavior and feeding modes were influenced by speed of water current and particle sizes. Particle selection takes place at the tip and mid regions of the palp where initial contact with the particles is made. A chemical mechanism for food particle selection is hypothesized. We hypothesize that the site of particle selection on the palps is related to the presence of dense sensory papillae.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 1997-03-01
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