Sea squirts

Sea squirts

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Credit: SINCLAIR STAMMERS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Colonies of adult sea squirts, Botryllus sp. Sea squirts are chordates and are a primitive link between invertebrates and vertebrates. In this colonial species of Botryllus, the individual animals are arranged in a near circular flower- shape (sometimes called star ascidians). Adult sea squirts live a sedentary life attached to a sub- strate such as rock. Their body shape is plump and saccular; an inhalent siphon (here, appears tooth- ed) admits water into the body; an exhalent siphon allows the water current, filtered of food, to pass out of the body (in the centre of the flower shape). Many ascidian species, such as this one, are known for their bright colour.

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Keywords: animal, botryllus, chordate, nature, sea squirt, urochordata, urochordate, wildlife, zoology

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