No common name

Corymorpha nutans

ORDER

Capitata

FAMILY

Corymorphidae

OTHER COMMON NAMES None known.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Hydroid: large, solitary, hydrocaulus subcylindrical, with short sensory papillae at base and numerous long, anchoring filaments; hydrocaulus with parenchymatic endoderm with numerous longitudinal anastomizing peripheral canals; hydrocaulus protected by a transparent membranous tube; hydranth flask-shaped to vasiform with about 20-80 oral filiform tentacles in several irregular whorls, and 20-32 aboral considerably longer filiform tentacles; hydranth and distal part of hydrocaulus bend downward; medusa buds in dense clusters on about 15-20 branching peduncles just above aboral tentacles.

Medusa: umbrella up to 0.23 in (6 mm) high (including apical process), cylindrical, with a high, pointed apical process and a long, narrow umbilical canal; mesoglea thick; velum wide; manubrium large, cylindrical, on short gastric peduncle, about two-thirds of the length of subumbrella, in full extension reaching slightly beyond exumbrellar margin; mouth simple, tube like, armed with cnidocysts; four radial canals and circular canal fairly broad; gonads completely surrounding manubrium, but living peduncle and mouth free; one single, long, marginal tentacle, moniliform; three perradial non-tentacular bulbs smaller than the tentacular one.

DISTRIBUTION

Atlantic, the Mediterranean, and Black Sea. (Specific distribution map not available.)

HABITAT

The hydroid lives at moderate depth with its basal part embedded in soft bottoms. The medusae are planktonic in coastal waters.

BEHAVIOR

Nothing is known.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

The hydroid, with its typical posture, is oriented with the mouth near to the bottom and it probably captures epibenthic vagile animals. The medusae feed on planktonic animals.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Both hydroids and medusae are sharply seasonal, occurring in correspondence with spring plankton blooms. Hydroids are not produced immediately, fertilization and the sexual reproduction originate an encysted embryo that spends the unfavorable season in the sediments, to become a polyp at the onset of the following favorable season.

CONSERVATION STATUS Not listed by the IUCN.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

TAXONOMY

Corymorpha nutans M. Sars, 1835, Norway.

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