[Annelida] Marine Megadrile?

Christer.erseus via annelida%40net.bio.net (by christer.erseus from zool.gu.se)
Fri Dec 7 02:35:00 EST 2007


Dear Scott,

It is very likely that you have found Pontodrilus litoralis (family Megascolecidae), a circumtropical "morphospecies" common in not so exposed beaches all around the globe. Historically, several nominal taxa were described for various forms and populations, but they were all merged under a single species name by Easton in 1984. An additional species, Pontodrilus primoris was described from Tasmanian seashores by Blakemore (2000); otherwise there seem to be no other "marine" earthworms".

I was always intrigued by this, so a student of mine and I now have a paper in the pipeline that will show that the genetic variation is considerable even among Pontodrilus worms from the same locality. [In fact, our study includes specimens from the Fort Pierce area, where we found two distinctly separate genotypes, likely to represent different (sibling) species.]

All the best,

Christer Erséus

-----Original message-----
From: "Scott Jones" msjoneser from gmail.com
Date: Thu, 06 Dec 2007 21:57:43 +0100
To: annelida from magpie.bio.indiana.edu
Subject: [Annelida] Marine Megadrile?

> Wormophiles:
> 
>   I have collected some large ( 68 mm and longer, 2.5 mm wide  ) megadrile
> oligochaetes on an intertidal flat in Fort Pierce, FL.  They were located by
> flipping over rocks.
> 
>   Body is naked and somatic chaetae are simple and paired; there is no
> visible clitellum.  I have not dissected these animals yet.
> 
>   Anyone have suggestions about what group this may belong to, or at least
> where to start?
> 
> thanks
> Scott Jones
> SMSFP
> 
> 



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