Brachiozoa

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Brachiozoa is a grouping of lophophorate animals including Brachiopoda and Phoronida. It also includes their ancestors, the extinct tommotiids.

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Brachiopods Horseshoe worms

Brachiopods

Brachiopods, phylum Brachiopoda, are a group of lophotrochozoan animals that have hard "valves" (shells) on the upper and lower surfaces, unlike the left and right arrangement in bivalve molluscs. Brachiopod valves are hinged at the rear end, while the front can be opened for feeding or closed for protection. Two major groups are recognized, articulate and inarticulate. Articulate brachiopods have toothed hinges and simple opening and closing muscles, while inarticulate brachiopods have untoothed hinges and a more complex system of muscles used to keep the two valves aligned. In a typical brachiopod a stalk-like pedicle projects from an opening in one of the valves near the hinges, known as the pedicle valve, keeping the animal anchored to the seabed.

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Starlux112BrachThumb.jpgParaspirifer

Horseshoe worms

Phoronida, horseshoe worms, is a phylum of worm-like filter-feeders that use ciliated tentacles called a lophophore. Species with the lophophore folded into a U-shape inspire the common name of horseshoe worms. There are only a dozen or so species. Length varies from a quarter inch to about a foot. Most build a tube. Distribution is temperate or tropical oceans with a depth of less than 180 feet.

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EpochPkmPhoronis.jpgPhoronis