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Tentacle cnidae of the sea anemone Metridium senile (Linnaeus, 1761) (Cnidaria: Anthozoa)
Carina Östman, Jens Roat Kultima and Carsten Roat

Tentacle cnidae of Metridium senile (Linnaeus, 1761) were examined by light microscopy. In addition to spirocysts, feeding-tentacles had 3 nematocyst categories grouped into medium and small size-classes, including 5 types. Spirocysts dominated, especially distally, followed by medium b-mastigophores. The density of cnidae decreased towards the tentacle base. Early cnidoblasts were numerous on the tentacle tip. Late cnidoblasts appeared in a moderate number on the mid-tentacle. Catch-tentacles, found in two Metridium specimens, had a maturity gradient of isorhizas and gland cells along their length. Their tip had two distinct types of mature isorhizas in great numbers and large gland cells, but lacked spirocysts. Mature isorhizas and gland cells decreased in number towards the tentacle base. On the mid-tentacle differentiating ages of isorhizas were numerous. Ordinary feeding-tentacle cnidae, abundant at the tentacle base, decreased in number distally along the tentacle.

Keywords: sea anemone, nematocysts, cnidae, catch-tentacles
Contents of this volume Sci. Mar. 74(3) : 511-521 Back PDF
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