CLASSIFICATION OF PONTOBDELLA
PHYLUM :- ANNELIDA (Metamerically segmented, coelomate and laterally symmetrical. )
CLASS :- HIRUDINEA (Annelids with fixed segments, without parapodia and with anterior and posterior
ORDER :- RHYCHOBDELLIDA OR AGNATHOBDELLIA (Proboscis protrusible; jaws and setae absent.)
FAMILY :- PISCICOLIDAE (jawless leeches, that are parasitic on fish)
GENUS :- Pontobdella (The skate sucker)
It is found in Europe and U.S.A.
HABIT AND HABITAT
Pontobdella leads ectoparasitic life. It is a marine annelid, parasitizing skates and rays.
GENERAL CHARACTERSTICS OF PONTOBDELLA
- Body is cylindrical, club-shaped measuring approximately 20 cm in length.
- Anterior region is narrow.
- Anterior sucker is saucer-shaped, fIrmly applied on the tissues of the host.
- Posterior sucker is deep and cub-shaped with serrated margin.
- Body surface is tuberculated having green tubercles or warts. It is rough and leathery.
- Metameres are not very conspicuous.
- Eyes and gills are absent.
- Pharynx is protrusible without jaws.
- Hermaphroditic. Reproduction sexual.
- Eggs are velvety, laid in empty mollusc shells.
The skate sucker (P. muricata) guards over the eggs for about three months till they are hatched.
The animal contain green tubercles and all above features, hence it is Pontobdella.