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Morphology of Xenodasys (Gastrotricha): the first species from the Mediterranean Sea and the establishment of Chordodasiopsis gen. nov. and Xenodasyidae fam. nov
Todaro, M.A.; Guidi, L.; Leasi, F.; Tongiorgi, P. (2006). Morphology of Xenodasys (Gastrotricha): the first species from the Mediterranean Sea and the establishment of Chordodasiopsis gen. nov. and Xenodasyidae fam. nov. J. Mar. Biol. Ass. U.K. 86(5): 1005-1015
In: Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. Cambridge University Press/Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom: Cambridge. ISSN 0025-3154, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Animal morphology; Cavernicolous species; New families; New genera; New records; Taxonomy; Chordodasiopsis Todaro, Guidi, Leasi & Tongiorgi, 2006 [WoRMS]; Gastrotricha [WoRMS]; Xenodasyidae Todaro, Guidi, Leasi & Tongiorgi, 2006 [WoRMS]; Xenodasys Swedmark, 1967 [WoRMS]; MED, Italy, Lecce, Grotta della Principessa; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Todaro, M.A., more
  • Guidi, L.
  • Leasi, F.
  • Tongiorgi, P.

Abstract
    During a survey of the Italian marine meiofauna, several specimens of the rare gastrotrich genus Xenodasys were found in a submarine cave along the Ionian coast of Apulia. The finding represents the fist record of the genus for the Mediterranean Sea and reinforces the consideration of marine caves as habitats of high naturalistic value. The specimens, analysed using different microscopy techniques, showed a new species, named Xenodasys eknomios. Scanning electron microscopy, unveiling the astonishing morphology of this unusual gastrotrich, indicates that, due to technical artefacts, light microscopy may generate unreal features, which in the past may have led to the misinterpretation of the anatomical traits of these creatures.

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