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Helgoland Marine Research

Open Access

Studies onOphryotrocha geryonicola (Polychaeta: Dorvilleidae)

  • H. -D. Pfannenstiel1,
  • C. Grothe1 and
  • B. Kegel1
Helgoländer Meeresuntersuchungen198235:BF02289838

Published: 1 March 1982


Ophryotrocha geryonicola was first described by Esmark (1874) asEteonopsis geryonicola. Bidenkap (1895) gave another short description. The species was redescribed by Wesenberg-Lund (1938) asOphryotrocha geryonicola. Desportes et al. (1977) reportedO. geryonicola from the western Mediterranean Sea. Recently, Gaston & Benner (1981) gave another redescription and recorded a new host for the most likely symbiotic species. These authors reestablished the original genusEteonopsis mainly because the species is epizoic and not free-living like otherOphryotrocha species. Since all descriptions, given so far, were obviously based on preserved material a more detailed description of live specimens is provided. The size of the specimens (140 mm recorded by Wesenberg-Lund, 1938), the branched intestine and their epizoic mode of living clearly demonstrate that these animals belong to a species separated from the other knownOphryotrocha species. On the other hand,O. geryonicola shows all the main characters of the genusOphryotrocha. Therefore it seems justifiable to leave this species within the genusOphryotrocha.