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Overview

Brief Summary

Thoracophelia are burrowing deposit feeders, generally found in the mid- to upper intertidal areas of sandy intertidals. Thoracophelia are characterized by having the body divided into three distinct body regions: (1) a head, (2) a swollen thoracic region, and (3) a longer narrower posterior region containing a ventral groove and branchiae. A lateral notopodial ridge or row of papillae separates the thoracic and posterior regions at the 10th chaetiger in all species (Blake, 2000; Santos et al., 2004).

Thoracophelia spp. can be distinguished by branchial structures, such as the three species found in North America: T. mucronata (Treadwell, 1914) is found along the west coast of North America and T. dillonensis (Hartman, 1938) and T. williamsi (Hartman, 1938) are found in central California (Law et al., 2013).

The genus Thoracophelia Ehlers, 1897, was recently revalidated by Blake (2011) and replaced genus Euzonus Grube 1866.

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Physical Description

Morphology

 The body of Thoracophelia spp. is divided into three distinct body regions: 1) an anterior cephalic region consisting of the prostomium and first two setigers; (2) a swollen thoracic region; and (3) a long narrow posterior region characterized by a ventral groove and branchiae. A transverse groove/lateral notopodial ridge separates the thoracic and posterior region (Santos et al., 2004).

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Ecology

Habitat

Depth range based on 10 specimens in 4 taxa.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 4 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 4008
  Temperature range (°C): 0.836 - 12.466
  Nitrate (umol/L): 3.089 - 32.948
  Salinity (PPS): 31.538 - 34.706
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.850 - 6.346
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.565 - 2.262
  Silicate (umol/l): 9.560 - 121.431

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 4008

Temperature range (°C): 0.836 - 12.466

Nitrate (umol/L): 3.089 - 32.948

Salinity (PPS): 31.538 - 34.706

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.850 - 6.346

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.565 - 2.262

Silicate (umol/l): 9.560 - 121.431
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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Associations

Known predators

Thoracophelia is prey of:
Actinopterygii

Based on studies in:
USA: California (Coastal)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
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Known prey organisms

Thoracophelia preys on:
detritus

Based on studies in:
USA: California (Coastal)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
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Notes

The name Euzonus Grube has been replaced by Thoracophelia Ehlers

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