Aquatic invertebrates

image of Aquatic invertebrates
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Keeping invertebrates in aquaria has become increasingly popular, both in domestic tanks and zoological collections. The science of invertebrate husbandry is still in its infancy, with little known about the specific requirements of many species. This chapter looks at general aspects as well as invertebrate groups.

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Figure 32.1 Brain corals () are typical hard corals that receive most of their nutrition from the symbiotic algae in their tissues. They require intensive lighting and very good water quality. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.2 The characteristic golden polyps of this hard coral, sp., only become extended at night. Unlike many other corals, it does not contain zooxanthellae algae and lives in darkened areas. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.3 The white calcium spicules help to support the water-filled structure of this cauliflower coral, a type of soft coral. It does not contain zooxanthellae but expands and it is most active at night. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.4 Physical injury has caused a few branches to break off from this hard coral ( sp.). The areas of exposed white flesh usually heal uneventfully over several weeks if the coral is kept in good water conditions. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.5 The ridged radial skeleton of this hard coral has become exposed due to the effects of rapid tissue necrosis. The fleshy tissue on the surface has become discoloured and is peeling off. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.6 Different species of zooxanthellae produce different vibrant colours in the mantle of clams. The large opening on the left side is the inhalant siphon and the everted tube in the centre is the exhalant siphon. (Courtesy of London Aquarium, © W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.7 This serpulid worm lives in a self-made hard calcareous tube. It has two feathery plumes with which it feeds and breathes. These can be retracted quickly in response to danger and local disturbance. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.8 ‘Sea-monkeys’ are a hybrid variety of , the brine shrimp. They have recently been commercially packaged and sold as pets in gift shops and supermarkets. The complete kit contains a small aquarium, water purifier, eggs and food. (© W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.9 The red hermit crab is one of the largest species of hermit crabs. They are active climbers and may cause considerable damage in a small invertebrate aquarium. (Courtesy of the Horniman Museum, © W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.10 The red knobbed starfish is popular among marine hobbyists and can reach up to 30 cm in diameter. However, they are omnivorous and will consume sessile marine invertebrates such as molluscs and corals. (Courtesy of Underwater World, © W.H. Wildgoose.)
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Figure 32.11 The ‘sea apple’ is one of the most colourful sea cucumbers and a popular species in marine aquaria. The feathery tentacles on the head are used for filter feeding and they can be fed on brine shrimp and rotifers. (Courtesy of Aquaworld, © W.H. Wildgoose.)
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