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Polychaete ecology (Again)

Aaron Baldwin jscat1 at ptialaska.net
Tue Jul 9 23:12:02 EST 1996

Hello All,

I posted a request for information on polychaete ecology several weeks 
ago. Unfortunately, a few days afterwards our mail server went down for 
a few weeks, and in the meantime my mailbox filled up and exploded, so I 
lost everything. If anyone replied to me specifically, and I didn't 
reply, please retry. I promise to respond back.

A synopsis: I am looking for information on the ecology of Alaskan 
polychaetes. Specifically, Mediomastus californiensis (Capitellidae), 
Myriochele oculata (Oweniidae), Glycera cf. tenuis (Glyceridae), 
Prionospio steenstrupi (Spionidae), Nephtys cornuta (Nephtyidae), 
Lumbrineris luti (Lumbrineridae), Tenonia priops (Polynoidae), Polydora 
cardalia (Spionidae), Magelona berkeleyi (Magelonidae), and Nephtys 
caeca (Nephtyidae). If this list differs from my original, it is 
probably because our "top ten" list is changing and the fact that I left 
my data sheets at work, so this is off of the top of my head.

We are also reaching a point in the study where I need to start putting 
names on all of our species. I am doing okay (using Washington state, 
British Columbia, and Eastern USSR keys) with the very large and some of 
the very small (small enough to mash under a cover slip). The problem 
lies with the in-betweens. Too small to remove the uncinii and too large 
to put the whole thing on a slide. Are there any keys to NE Pacific 
polychaetes that would utilize some other characteristics that would be 
more obvious? For example, we are getting this little Polydora (under 
5 mm). I cannot find a way to remove the uncinii from the 5th setiger. 
However, it is white with a row of tiny black dots that nearly encircle 
every setiger. This feature would seem to be fairly unique, and just 
might id it to species with any micro-dissection. Either that or I would 
appreciate any tips on micro-dissection of the "in-between" worms.

                                                 Aaron Baldwin

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