MiniGrant List: 2008-2009


Title: Description of new polychaete species from the Canada Basin

Sergey Gagaev Principal Investigator
Sergey Gagaev,
Zoological Institute,
Russian Academy of Sciences,
St. Petersburg, Russia

Project goals
To describe new species of polychaetes collected in box core samples during USCGC Healy cruise HLY0502.

Two new species of polychaetes were described from box corer collections made during the 2005 Hidden Ocean II expedition onboard the USCGC Healy to the deep Canada Basin. The two species are Terebellides irinae (Terebellidae) and Sigambra healyae (Pilargidae), named after the author’s wife and the research vessel the specimens were collected with, respectively, and their descriptions were published in the Russian Journal of Marine Biology in 2008 and 2009. T. irininae differs from other closely related species by its underdeveloped ventral branchial lobes and in that the aciculum-like neurochaetes of the 6th setigerous segment are curved at a right angle and have a thin capillaceous tip. Specimens of this polychaete worm are no longer than 15 mm. S. healyae differs from other closely related species by the presence of a second acicula in the notopodia, the presence of only bidentate neuropodial setae, and the pigmentation of the prostomium. An additional dozen new species of polychaetes were also collected during the same expedition and, where the material permits, these will be described over the coming years.

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