CLASSIFICATION OF OPHIOLEPIS

KINGDOM :- ANIMALIA (Multicellular eukaryotic organisms)

PHYLUM :- ECHINODERMATA (Coelomate, pentaradiate and spiny skinned animals with vascular system.)

SUB-PHYLUM :- ELEUTHEROZOA (Non-pedicellate and free-living.)

CLASS :- OPHIUROIDEA (Central disc and arms distinct.)

ORDER :- OPHIURIDA (Arms bent only to lateral sides.)

FAMILY :- OPHIOLEPIDIDAE

GENUS :- Ophiolepis

GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION

  • Distributed from tropical to polar regions and they have been collected from depths of 6,000 m.

HABIT AND HABITAT

  • They are abundant in littoral zone hidden often in the sand and other objects. Some live in sponges.

OPHIOLEPIS

GENERAL CHARACTERSTICS OF OPHIOLEPIS

  • Commonly called as Brittle stars. 
  • Oral and aboral surfaces well differentiated.
  • Central disc and arms quite distinct. Arms contain podia. 
  • Mesodermal endoskeleton consits of c1acareous ossic1es. 
  • Central disc of aboral surface is composed of radial shield, lateral arms shield, aboral shield, central plate and primary concentric plates. 
  • Central disc has primitive concentric arrangement of plates. 
  • Branchial, dermal papillae and pedicellarea are absent.
OPHIOLEPIS

IDENTIFICATION

  • The animal has primitive concentric arrangement of plates in central disc and all above features, hence, it is Ophiolepis.

OPHIOLEPIS
OPHIOLEPIS
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