Phylum Porifera

Halichondria panicea, Breadcrumb sponge Belonging to the phylum Porifera, and really not much of an animal, is the bread crumb sponge, so called because it crumbles easily when pried off the rocks. Sponges are really a loose collection of cells, which carry out the basic functions of animal life almost independently of one another. They are the only animals to correspond to the cell aggregate plan.

Phylum Porifera
Halichondria panicea, Breadcrumb sponge Bread crumb sponge is often camouflaged by green algae, which provides the sponge with nutrients in return for protection. For a long time, nobody even knew if the sponge was an animal. Then it was discovered that water 7was entering through tiny pores, oxygen and food was being removed, and waste was being expelled through much larger pores, which on the bread crumb sponge resemble volcanoes.

Phylum Porifera
Haliclona oculata This sponge reaching up from the ocean floor is appropriately named deadman¶s fingers. Sponges, because they are filter feeders, live in water. Many phyla are totally aquatic, and many are largely marine, that is most members are found in salt water. Sponges are permanently attached to the bottom and do not draw away when touched, as they have no nervous system nor distinct tissues or organs.

Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria)
Tealia felina, Dahlia anemone Again, it is hard to believe that this is an animal. Sea anemones are commonly called the flowers of the sea. Their tentacles resemble petals. Sea anemones, jellyfish and hydroids all belong to the phylum Coelenterata. They are more complex animals than the sponge, and their design conforms to that of the blind sac plan. These animals have a single opening to take in food and expel waste.

and the captured prey drawn into the sac where it is digested. While digesting.Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria) Tealia felina Small animals that come within range of the tentacles are quickly enveloped. Can you think of any disadvantages in having a single opening serving as both a mouth and an anus? . the anemone resembles a stewed tomato.

but are relatively small and inconspicuous. Hydroids also belong to the phylum Coelenterata. Prey brushed against the tentacles is impaled by a barb ejected from the cnidocyte.Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria) Tubularia sp. hydroids have special stinging cells called cnidocytes at the tip of their tentacles. . Like most coelenterates.

. Reproductive structures resemble clusters of grapes. but solitary forms do exist.Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria) Solitary hydroid Hydroids usually form delicate bushlike colonies.

some jellyfish deliver a powerful sting. jellyfish can be considered upside down sea anemones. With the sac opening located in the center and encircled by tentacles. . Unlike the hydroids.Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria) Cyanea capillata The lion¶s mane is the world¶s largest jellyfish.

. All coelenterates are radially symmetrical. it is almost transparent as it drifts along with the currents. are the most visible parts of the jellyfish. It¶s four circular gonads.Phylum Coelenterata (Cnidaria) Aurelia aurita The moon jelly. that is their parts are arranged around the center. the reproductive structures. like spokes on a wheel. a jellyfish.

these animals are not radially. an important development.Phylum Nemertina (Rhynchocoela) Amphiporus angulatus A ribbon worm. belonging to the phylum Nemertina. Though relatively primitive. moving over the bottom using hair-like cilia. . but bilaterally symmetrical.

these worms have a head and a tail.Phylum Nemertina (Rhynchocoela) Ph. Nemertina Like most animals that are longer than they are wide. Bilateral symmetry implies that if a line were drawn straight down the middle of this worm. How is this an advantage over radial symmetry? . it would be divided into two mirrored portions.

. With bilateral symmetry come the beginnings of features more developed in higher phyla. and this contorted position shows the underside of this worm. Nemertina These worms are remarkably elastic.Phylum Nemertina (Rhynchocoela) Ph.

. the strong muscular foot used for locomotion.Phylum Mollusca Lunatia heros The moon snail outdoes itself exhibiting one of the characteristics of the phylum Mollusca. And believe it or not. the moon snail is able to completely withdraw its head and large foot when threatened. The shell provides protection for the soft-bodied mollusk inside. When foraging. the foot and the head extend out from the shell.

It is the first phylum to fully exhibit the tube within a tube body plan. . Mollusca is a large phylum and an important one.Phylum Mollusca Littorina littorea A party of periwinkles feed on the slimy algae covering the rocks.

the bilateral symmetry is evident.? This is a nudibranch. and at the tail end. commonly called a sea slug. an anus. there is a definite head with tentacles.Phylum Mollusca Aeolida sp. With a nudibranch. . where the mouth is located. Think of it as a snail removed from the shell and untwisted.

they exhibit the tube within a tube body plan. .Phylum Mollusca Coryphella rufibranchialis Nudibranchs are beautiful animals. Internally. despite their close relation to the common garden slugs. The inside tube is a digestive system. common to the majority of bilaterally symmetrical animals. The coelem is of great significance in animal evolution. the outside tube is a fluid filled body cavity called the coelem.

having two shells compared to the one shell carried by the snails. that is. is a class of animals called the bivalves. these blue mussels completely cover the bottom. In certain areas. .Phylum Mollusca Mytilus edulis Within the phylum mollusca.

the scallop. .Phylum Mollusca Placopecten magellanicus A large bivalve. a large circular muscle that holds the two halves of the shell together. and it is this muscle that is the edible part of the scallop.

the shell remains. With the squid and cuttlefish. but it along with the squid.Phylum Mollusca Bathypolypus arcticus. but is internalized. The octopus has lost its shell entirely. . Little octupus The octopus is a most unlikely mollusc. are grouped within the phylum Mollusca. nautilus and cuttlefish.

When swimming. . which places it in the phylum Annelida. a worm with a difference. the clam worm is continually rewriting the letter ³S´. the segmented worms. Its body is divided into similar rings or segments. Segmentation has improved the annelid¶s ability to burrow and swim.Phylum Annelida Nereis virens The clam worm.

and spend their whole life in the open water. . is segmented. Some annelids are very effective swimmers. the fluid-filled coelem. Segmentation has obviously not affected the digestive tube of these worms. but the encircling tube.Phylum Annelida Tomopteris sp.

This annelid is normally obscured by its tube. orange tentacles.Phylum Annelida Amphitrite johnstoni Other annelids build tubes for themselves. The red tentacles are for respiration. . which it constructs with the use of its long.

hence the coiled castings. It uses quartz sand grains to construct its tube. it feeds by ingesting sand. The segmented body is only visible when the worm is removed. Like many tube-dwelling annelids. .Phylum Annelida Pectinaria gouldii The delicate trumpet worm ± another tubeworm. extracting food particles and excreting the dirt.

A distinguishing feature of all members is a jointed or segmented outer skeleton. known as an exoskeleton.Phylum Arthropoda Pandalus borealis This shrimp is a member of the largest and most diverse phylum ± Arthropoda. Segmentation of the shrimp¶s muscular abdomen allows for quick backward movement as well as being a delicacy for seafood fans. . Three quarters of all animal species are arthropods.

. these animals demonstrate their flexibility as they hop into the air or scoot across the rocks to escape. If seaweed is pulled aside or a rock lifted up at low tide.Phylum Arthropoda Gammarus oceanicus The amphipod¶s body is completely segmented.

and all members share. ³pod´ for leg as in tripod.Classification Carcinus maenas The green crab exhibits the jointed legs from which the phylum derives its name. ³Arthron´ for jointed as in arthritis. .

segmentation. and a well-developed head. All arthropods exhibit the tube within a tube body plan. Phylum Arthropoda is also extremely diverse. a delicate crustacean. on a sponge. it includes the largely terrestrial insects. along with bilateral symmetry. A caprellid. . scorpions and spiders. Along with the largely aquatic crustaceans.Phylum Arthropoda Caprella sp.

Phylum Arthropoda Pagurus acadianus The hermit crab has taken to inhabiting the vacated homes of molluscs. . the shell of the moon snail.

Phylum Arthropoda Pagurus acadianus The hermit crabs soft abdomen is well adapted for wrapping around the spiral interior of the snail¶s shell. .

However. these top plates move apart and the animal begins to feed. an unlikely member of the phylum arthropoda. .Phylum Arthropoda Balanus balanoides At first glance. can be easily mistaken for a mollusc. when submerged. the barnacle.

. Barnacles extend from 3 to 6 pairs of segmented feathery legs. which trap minute food particles and then are withdrawn.Phylum Arthropoda Balanus sp. A 19th century biologist described the barnacle as nothing more than a little shrimp-like animal standing on its head in a limestone house and kicking food into its mouth.

Phylum Echinodermata Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis These are the needle-like spines of the sea urchin. are tube feet. which belongs to the phylum Echinodermata. Another common feature of this phylum. . seen here extending between the spines. Echinodermata is translated as hedgehog or spiny skin.

Phylum Echinodermata Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis The tube feet are primarily used for locomotion. The tube feet of the sea urchin are arranged in five rows running from the mouth on the underside to the anus on top. Sea urchins are closely related to sand dollars and sea buns. but may be used for feeding and respiration. .

with no head or brain.Phylum Echinodermata Asterias forbesii A common seastar moving slowing using tube feet on the underside of each arm. are well developed structurally. thought to extend from a bilateral ancestor. and the larvae are bilaterally symmetrical. but the adults are radially symmetrical. The echinoderms are a confusing bunch. .

Phylum Echinodermata Ophiopholis aculeata The brittle stars are another group of echinoderms. their arms break off easily. As the name implies. . The arms of the brittle star are sharply set off from the central disc.

the arms signify death for many small prey. Though beautiful. Sometimes these animals form entangled masses and the net is spread even wider.Phylum Echinodermata Gorgonocephalus arcticus Another brittle star ± the basket star. .

Although bearing no obvious resemblance to the seastars. the 5 rows of longitudinally arranged tube feet provide the necessary clue to indicate their relationship to other echinoderms. . the sea cucumbers.Phylum Echinodermata Cucumaria frondosa One group of echinoderms not sought after by shell collectors. sea urchins or brittle stars.

. which are then placed in the mouth and wiped off. Food particles are collected by the tentacles. as they are withdrawn.Phylum Echinodermata Psolus fabricii When undisturbed. the crown of tentacles surrounds the mouth. The anus is located at the opposite end of the animal.

Tunicates are filter feeders. and therefore possess the tube within a tube body plan. they have a well-developed circulatory and digestive system. a tunicate. Internally. . and have an incurrent and excurrent siphon.Phylum Chordata Halocynthia pyriformis This is a sea peach. The name tunicate is suggested by the tough leathery tunic that covers these animals.

with those animals possessing a backbone. tunicates in their larval stages develop the beginnings of a backbone. . but on a stalk. Among other similarities. but a vegetable. Like a sea peach. But zoologists have placed the tunicates in the phylum Chordata that is. Tunicates are one of the most unlikely animals to bridge the gap between invertebrates and the vertebrates. which later disappears. the sea potato.Phylum Chordata Boltenia ovifera Not a fruit.

Whatever their origin. the invertebrates evolved from. those spineless. Echinodermata and even Nemertina have been suggested. the invertebrates. There is much debate as to which invertebrate phylum. are an immensely fascinating and diversified group. . The phyla Annelida.Phylum Chordata Sculpin The fish is no borderline invertebrate. possessing a well-developed vertebral column.