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Description

“Aphrodite alta, Kinberg.

 

Kinberg, 1857, p. 2, pl. i, fig. i, a-g.

 

St. 181. 12. iii. 27. Schollaert Channel, Palmer Archipelago. 64° 20’ 00” S, 63° 01’ 00” W. 160-335 m. Gear OTL. Bottom: mud. One specimen.

 

DESCRIPTION. Body oval, with flat papillated sole. The measurements are 25 mm. by 12 mm. including the feet. There are about 35 chaetigers. The back is a plaster of fine mud entangled with the felting, which is not penetrated by the dorsal bristles. On probing the felting these are seen as an occasional gleam of chestnut brown.

 

The prostomium is globular with a very short stout median tentacle, on either side of which is an ocular prominence without a trace of eyes. Below the tentacle there is a laterally compressed facial tubercle. The palps are stout, tapering and rather short, reaching to the 6th chaetiger (5th foot) when laid along the venter. The tentacular cirri are lost.

 

The dorsal bristles corresponding to the large bronzed bristles of the majority of species are very long, of a chestnut brown and end in a hook. They are nearly all broken off and lie loose, entangled in the felting. This may account for the fact that they do not project through the felting.

 

The ventral bristles of the first two chaetigers are of three types: (1) the upper are stout bronze-coloured bristles with slightly curved ends (Fig. 5, b); (2) a few middle bipinnate bristles; (3) the lower are similar to the middle bristles but more slender and spirally twisted (Fig. 5, c).

 

The ventral bristles of the middle feet of the body are of the usual three sizes, and all have slightly curved, heavily bearded ends (Fig. 5, d). The ventral bristles of the posterior feet change in the usual manner for the genus. The last half-dozen feet are so crowded together that I cannot count with certainty, but at about the 6th from the end the upper bristles (Fig. 5, e) are bearded much further down the shaft than in the middle body, and the middle and lower bristles are strongly denticulated. Further back there are a number of long, fine bristles with alternating teeth. In the last three or four feet of the body the ventral bristles are broken off. I have figured several types of posterior ventral bristle (Fig. 5, f–i).

 

In the middle feet the ventral cirri reach to the end of the foot, in the posterior feet they are longer.

 

REMARKS. I have doubtfully assigned this example to Kinberg’s species from off Rio Janeiro, on the ground that the dorsal felting conceals the dorsal bristles. The specimen is an Aphroditella or young Aphrodite and it is indistinguishable, as far as Horst's brief description goes (Horst, 1917, p. 49), from his Aphroditella limosa from a depth of 835 m. off the Malay Archipelago, except in the shape of the median tentacle. It is also very similar to Aphrodite obtecta, Ehlers from the coast of Florida and to the A. talpa, Quatrefages of Fauvel (Fauvel, 1925, pp. 140-144). It is distinguished from the A. echidna, Quatrefages of McIntosh from the Magellan region by the fact that in A. echidna the dorsal bristles project through the felting.

 

This is the first record of an Aphrodite from Antarctic waters.”

 

(Monro, 1930)

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Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution

Source: Antarctic Invertebrates Website (NMNH)

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