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Free Content Functional Morphology and Feeding Behavior of Marenzelleria Viridis (Polychaeta: Spionidae)

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The functional morphology of the feeding palps, prostomium and peristomium of the spionid polychaete Marenzelleria viridis was studied based upon specimens from Delaware Bay, Delaware. The feeding palps of M. viridis were short in length compared to spionid species of similar total body length and were provided with two groups of cilia—frontal cilia lining the food groove and non-motile cirri on the lateral and abfrontal surface. M. viridis is the first spionid polychaete known to have feeding palps with an asymmetrical arrangement of cilia. On the inner side of the frontal surface of the palp (relative to the palp held on the sediment surface) are distinct rows of cilia arranged perpendicular to the food groove. These rows are spaced 10 μm apart while the frontal cilia of the food groove are densely packed with no distinct rows. The frontal cilia of the food groove transport particles to the pharynx for potential ingestion and the non-motile cirri of the palp were scattered along the length of the palp and projected directly from the surface of the palp. The prostomium and peristomium were provided with eversible cirri. When cirri were projected they were attached to a raised, circular mound. Cirri of the feeding palps, prostomium and peristomium were assumed to be sensory.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 1997

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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