NIWA Guide to Polychaeta | Shore polychaetes | Pick shore group | Pick shore family | Shell polychaetes
Nereis ovarius Nereididae (nereidid/rag worm)
Phyllodocida (Annelida: Polychaeta)
Nereis  ovarius  Read, 1980.   Family Nereididae  
     Nereis ovarius
[Click photo for picture page]

Show available picture(s) for Nereis ovarius
 Habitat: Intertidal. Subtidal. Rocky shore. Open beaches. Epifaunal. Depth range: 0-5 (m). Salinity regime: Marine only. Microhabitat:  Low tide within holdfasts of turfing-habit small algae. Tube: Rough structure of debris and mucus.
Occurrence:  Consistently occurring. Density: 50 (m2).
Distribution in NZ: Widespread in New Zealand
 Feeding guild: Surface grazing-herbivore.
 Diagnosis:  Genus Nereis in Family Nereididae.
A small species with few paragnaths, dorsally present as inconspicuous minute single cones on areas II and VI, ventrally a single row on VII-VIII, one conical on area III, a small diagonal group on IV. Tentacular cirri characteristically spindle-shaped, short. Posterior parapodia with notopodial ligule much reduced. From chaetiger 14 a single homogomph notopodial bidentate falciger is present. Colour: Pale greenish- or brownish-yellow anteriorly, paler posteriorly, with scattered white surface spots. Maturing females with conspicuous very large green oocytes. Maximum size: 20 mm total length, 1 mm body width.
 Notable aspect: Small size, small paragnaths dorsally, spindle-shaped tentacular cirri.
 Comparisons:  Nereis ovarius is easily distinguished from other New Zealand Nereis on paragnath pattern. N. falcaria has similar homogomph notopodial falcigers.
 Taxonomy:  Distinct but belongs in the N. jacksoni group.
 Distribution: Endemic. NZ only.
 Biology: This endemic Nereis has a unique reproductive biology. It metamorphoses and spawns in spring. Heteronereids have a pseudocopulation in which the swimming male grasps the female with his tail. The female carries the fertilised eggs on her dorsal surface at first, before gluing them inside a shelter where she broods them. Larvae hatch after about 8 chaetigers have developed.
 Best References:   Biology: Read (1980) A new species of Nereis (Polychaeta: Nereididae) from Wellington, New Zealand, rock shores.. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 10:185-193 Taxonomy: No recommendation.

 Synonyms,  NZ records Original figures Original description details
 Genus diagnosis More pictures Further references (biology, etc) Family Nereididae

  GOOGLE Search |   AlltheWeb Search | CISTI |   CBIF BiOSC Gateway | GOBASE Molecular | GenBank | Genus only in GenBank |
Genus only in Ubio Taxonomic Name Server |  PubMed | Scirus | Zoological Record |

  Note: use the Back button of your browser to return to Shore Polychaete Guide.

The information provided by this page and by the pages of the "more information" links is held in a structured form for rapid and frequent updating and improvement. Descriptive text is compiled from a number of database fields, some of which may occasionally be empty.
Data last edited 5/07/2004, and page last generated by G. Read, 27/07/2004    (dd/mm/yy)