Tetranchyroderma paralittoralis   Rao,  1991 (Gastrotrich)
Organism information awaits expert curation

Size: Length 380 µm and width 50 µm in extended condition.

Body is about 7 times longer than width, vermiform and dorsoventrally flattened. The animal is highly contractile. Head distinct with a narrow neck and the trunk nearly keeps the same width all along its length. Both the head and tail are bluntly rounded. Head is of the same width as trunk and bears a pair of lateral pestle organs. Tentacles absent. Posterior end of the body bears two pedicles commonly seen in other species of the genus.

Excepting for the anterior region of head, body has a complete dorsal covering of cuticular hooks arranged in about 110 transverse rows. Each row consists of 9–12 hooks. The anterior 25-40 rows are composed of tetrancres or 4-pronged hooks, while the rest of the posterior ones are pentancres or 5-pronged hooks. There are 8-10 pairs of dorsolateral epidermal glands, about 6-8 µm in diameter, with regringent granular material. Short sensory cilia 6-12 µm long occur on the anterior margin of head and the lateral margins of the trunk. The anterior adhesive organ consists of 3 pairs of tubes about 8 µm in length on the ventral surface just behind the mouth. 12 pairs of evenly spaced ventrolateral tubes measuring 8-10 µm in length are present. The posterior adhesive pedicles are trifid with 1 ventral and 2 dorsal tubes. 3 pairs of posterior ventral tubes about 8 µm in length are present close to the level of anus. Mouth is widely extensible and about 40 µm wide. Pharynx is about 120 µm long and occupies nearly 1/3 of the total gut length. Pharyngeal pores are indistinct at the posterior end of pharynx. Anus is subterminal.

Reproductive system consists of a single testis and an ovary. Receptaculum seminis is small, 15 µm long and bladder-like. Bursa corpulatrix lies behind the receptaculum, 30 µm long, pitcher-shaped and opens on the ventral surface just behind the male genital aperture and before the anal aperture.

Synonym (s)

Common Name (s)
Economic Importance and Threats

Habitat:  Demersal, Sandy, Coastal


• Lakshadweep, Andrott (Lat: 10.81) (Long: 73.68) INDIA (Record: 26/02/1983, 27/02/1983) (Depth: 0.1 mts)
• Lakshadweep, Agatti INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Zoological Survey of India (Eds) (1991) Animal resources of India (Protozoa to Mammalia) ZSI 1-694 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Rao, GC (1991) Meiofauna State fauna series 2: Fauna of Lakshadweep ZSI, Calcutta 41-135 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Priyalakshmi, G and Menon, NR (2008) Indian marine Gastrotricha Available at - http://www.gastrotricha.unimore.it/Indian-marine.pdf
  • Sealifebase Available at - http://www.sealifebase.org/

Page last updated on:2010-11-22

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