Polydora cornuta, copyright Erica Keppel.

Belongs within: Spionidae.

Polydora is a genus of polychaete worms that often burrow into calcareous substrata such as coral reefs or mollusk shells.

Characters (from Williams 2001): Prostomium with anterior incision or rounded; caruncle extending posteriorly, surrouded by cilia of nuchal organ. Segment 1 without notosetae. Segment 5 modified with one type of major spine in single curved row, with or without companion setae; juveniles may possess large, falcate major spines that are replaced by subsequent spines. Posterior notopodial spines present or absent. Bidentate hooded hooks beginning on segments 7–14, main fang at approximately right angle to shaft, wide angle between main fang and apical tooth, with constriction on shaft. Branchiae beginning posterior to segment 5. Pygidium variable: cuff-shaped, cup-shaped with dorsal gap, lobed, scoop-shaped, or with digitiform cirri. Anterior portion of digestive tract lacking gizzardlike structure.

Polydora Bosc 1802 [incl. Leipoceras Möbius 1874, Leucodore Johnston 1838, Protopolydora Czerniavsky 1881]W01
|--*P. cornuta Bosc 1802W01
|--P. agassiziW01
|--P. aggregataW01
|--P. caeca Oersted 1843W01
|--P. californica (Fewkes 1889) [=Spio californica]H56
|--P. cavitensisW01
|--P. ciliata (Johnston 1838) [=*Leucodore ciliatus]W01
|--P. flavaPG98
|--P. giardi Masnil 1896RP07
|--P. hamata Webster 1879W01
|--P. hopluraH75
|--P. limicolaW01
|--P. mabinii Williams 2001W01
|--P. neocaecaW01
|--P. nuchalisW01
|--P. pacificaW01
|--P. posthamata Jones 1962 [=P. hamata Langerhans 1880 non Webster 1879, *Protopolydora hamata]W01
|--P. robi Williams 2000W01
|--P. umangivora Williams 2001W01
|--*Leipoceras’ uviferum Möbius 1874W01
|--P. websteriW01
`--P. woodwickiW01

*Type species of generic name indicated


[H75] Häntzschel, W. 1975. Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology pt W. Miscellanea Suppl. 1. Trace Fossils and Problematica 2nd ed. The Geological Society of America: Boulder (Colorado), and The University of Kansas: Lawrence (Kansas).

[H56] Hartman, O. 1956. Polychaetous annelids erected by Treadwell, 1891 to 1948, together with a brief chronology. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 109 (2): 239–310.

[PG98] Probert, P. K., & S. L. Grove. 1998. Macrobenthic assemblages of the continental shelf and upper slope off the west coast of South Island, New Zealand. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 28: 259–280.

[RP07] Rousset, V., F. Pleijel, G. W. Rouse, C. Erséus & M. E. Siddall. 2007. A molecular phylogeny of annelids. Cladistics 23: 41–63.

[W01] Williams, J. D. 2001. Polydora and related genera associated with hermit crabs from the Indo-West Pacific (Polychaeta: Spionidae), with descriptions of two new species and a second polydorid egg predator of hermit crabs. Pacific Science 55 (4): 429–465.

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