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[Phyllodicola Petiti (Delamare Et Laubier, 1960) Et La Famille Des Phyllodicolidae, Copépodes Parasites D'Annélides Polychètes En Méditerranée Occidentale, Phyllodicola Petiti (Delamare Et Laubier, 1960) Et La Famille Des Phyllodicolidae, Copépodes Parasites D'Annélides Polychètes En Méditerranée Occidentale]

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image of Crustaceana

Phyllodicola petiti (Delamare and Laubier, 1960), belonging to the family Phyllodicolidae Delamare and Laubier, 1960, is a very curious parasitic copepod occurring on polychaete annelids of the family Phyllodocidae. Only three specimens of this new species are known: an adult female with egg-stalks, a young female and a very young stage just at the end of its free-swimming life. The main features of this form are: body completely external to its host, attached by a strong chitinous ring on which are borne two long rhizoids which extend into the coelom of the annelid. There are three pairs of appendages: the antennule, unsegmented with fourteen setae; the antenna, two-segmented with a special apparatus for the young stage's attachment; and the two-segmented maxillipeds. The antenna and maxillipeds bear respectively two and three strong terminal hooks; the genital apparatus consists of an unpaired gonopore, and two little holes fitted with teeth ("spinnerets"). The egg-stalks are very atypical: the eggs are not held in the usual ovisacs, but are individually attached to a common axis by short and thin peduncles. To our knowledge, this special structure is unique in copepods. The morphological description of these three stages of Phyllodicola petiti is followed by a brief account of its life-history and the nauplii are briefly described.

Affiliations: 1: Laboratoire Arago, Banyuls-sur-Mer, France


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