Worm eggs and amphipods
LINDSAY at cls.biol.sc.edu
Mon Jun 24 10:14:27 EST 1996
Edwin Cruz-rivera wrote:
> I have stumbled across some mudflat worm gelatinous egg masses
> that are plagued with what seems to be the amphipod Microprotopus
> raneyi. Before this, I had never seen it in large numbers anywhere
> around here, but we have collected this amphipod occasionally in
> plankton tows. I have checked some of the obvious sources and,
> have only been able to find one reference dealing directly with
> amphipod-egg mass associations (Fox, 1980).Has anyone observed
> similar phenomena in other annelids that put out
> gelatinous masses of eggs?
Nereis vexillosa lay gelatinous egg masses (lots of little jelly
bubbles packed together into a spongy sort of egg mass). At False
Bay, on San Juan Island, WA, USA, these invariably end up infested
with amphipods, though I have never keyed out the amphipod species.
Interestingly, I've seen far fewer infestations in egg masses layed
at a more protected site, Mitchell Bay on San Juan Island. I have
not noticed significant amphipod loads on Arenicola cristata egg
masses that we've collected from Pawley's Island and North Inlet, SC,
but I will pay closer attention and let you know.
Happy worm/amphipod hunting.
Sara M. Lindsay, Ph.D.
Dept. Biological Sciences
University of South Carolina
Columbia, S.C. 29208
Phone (803) 777-9621
FAX (803) 777-4002
More information about the Annelida