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Category: Invertebrates



These microscopic and near-microscopic pseudocoelomates are common in freshwater environments all over the world (and a few species can be found in salt-water as well). Rotifers have bilateral symmetry and are divided into head, trunk, and foot regions. Their most distinctive feature is the ciliated “corona” on their head. These coronal cilia form a current that sweeps food particles into their mouth. These cilia can also be used to pull the rotifers through the water when not attached to a substrate. One class of rotifer, the Bdelloidea, are assumed to have not sexually reproduced for millions of years – there are actually no males within the species and the females reproduce only through parthenogenesis!



Data & Facts

Scientific Classification
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Rotifera

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Interesting Animal Facts

Body horror in the insect kingdom

Learning about animals, you can discover many fascinating, even beautiful facts, but there are also things that can give you nightmares! Enter the strepsiptera (“twisted-wing parasite”). The adult female has no limbs, wings, or mouth - she simply lives in and feeds off her host (typically a wasp). When it becomes time to mate, she protrudes part of her abdomen from between the plates of her host and uses mind control to get the wasp to fly off to nearby males. Sexually mature males have wings, and fly around for about five hours before dying - spending their entire short existence seeking out females to mate with. After the female is impregnated, her own young grow and consume her. And once there is nothing left to eat, they leave their host wasp, infiltrate the nursery, and latch on to a larvae to create their own “zombie wasp” host and continue the grisly cycle!

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