Animal Phyla/Cycliophora

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Symbion pandora, a Cycliphoran.
  • Cycliophora
  • Name Meaning: Wheel carrying
  • English Common Name: Symbion
  • Major distinguishing characteristics: Circular mouth surrounded by small cilia
  • Approximate number of species described: at least 3

Natural History[edit]

The three species of Cyclophora live on the bodies of lobsters.

They are filter feeders. Adult males lack a digestive system. The digestive system of the females changes to form part of the reproductive system to release larvae.

They can reproduce sexually or by budding.

Taxonomy[edit]

The Phylum Cyclophora consists of three species, all currently assigned to the genus Symbion.

  • Symbion americanus Obst, Funch & Kristensen, 2005
  • Symbion pandora Funch & Kristensen, 1995
  • and one other known not yet described

Anatomy[edit]

Symbion are bilateral, and sac-like.

The body consists of an buccal funnel, an oval trunk, a posterior stalk, and adhesive disc. The disc attaches the animal to it's lobster host (see image).

The Fossil Record[edit]

There is no known fossil record.

Quiz[edit]

References and Further Reading[edit]