Date of Award

Summer 1982

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences



Committee Director

Daniel M. Dauer

Committee Member

Raymond Alden, III

Committee Member

James Matta

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.B46 S86


Observations of feeding behavior of three species of spionid polychaetes (Paraprionospio pinnata, Polydora ligni, and Streblospio benedicti) were performed in currents ranging from 0 to 10 cm/sec over fine and coarse sediments and in high and low suspended particle loads. These interface feeders may suspension feed, deposit feed, or both simultaneously using a pair of anterior tentaculate feeding palps. P. ligni and S. benedicti were found to alter their palp behaviors in response to experimental manipulations. P. ligni reacted strongly to currents by suspension feeding with coiled palps. S. benedicti reacted strongly and complexly to food particle type and availability. Palp length was inversely correllated with the amount of suspension feeding done by P. ligni. P. pinnata became very secretive when environmental conditions were changed.


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