Eunicidae Lysidice

Kristian Fauchald Fauchald.Kristian at NMNH.SI.EDU
Tue Jun 7 14:54:35 EST 2005

Lysidice is often found together with Palolo's when they swarm and in fact for 
a while there was more than a bit of confusion between them (this goes back to 
the 19th century).  The two genera can be difficult to separate in that both 
have scoop-shaped  lower jaws.  However, Lysidice always lack palps and the 
antennae are usually somewhat taeniate, rather than digitiform (i.e. slightly 
inflated at midlevels).  Palolo has all five anterior appendages;  including 
the palps.  Note that during regeneration Palolo will have a stage when the 
individuals have only the three antennae, so one has to be careful.  There are 
about a dozen described species of Lysidice, most are warm water species 
associated with coral reefs, coral rubble and seagrass beds.  They are often 
found in general samples mixed in with species of Eunice, Marphysa and Palolo.

Generally, Lysidice, at least when fully grown, tends to be rather solid-
bodied, whereas Palolo is much more slender.  All of which is to tell you that 
the separation of species of Lysidice is not easy and the genus is awaiting a 
review. Kristian Fauchald  

Kristian Fauchald, Research Zoologist
Department of Zoology
NMNH, Smithsonian Institution
P.O.Box 37012, 
NHB MRC 0163
Washington, DC 20013-7012
phone: 202.633.1777
fax 202.357.3043
fax: 202.357.3043

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