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14.15: Introduction to Superphylum Ecdysozoa

  • Page ID
    44715
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    What you’ll learn to do: Identify the common characteristics of superphylum Ecdysozoa

    The superphylum Ecdysozoa contains an incredibly large number of species. This is because it contains two of the most diverse animal groups: phylum Nematoda (the roundworms) and Phylum Arthropoda (the arthropods). The most prominant distinguising feature of Ecdysozoans is their tough external covering called the cuticle. The cuticle provides a tough, but flexible exoskeleton that protects these animals from water loss, predators and other aspects of the external environment. All members of this superphylum periodically molt, or shed their cuticle as they grow. After molting, they secrete a new cuticle that will last until their next growth phase. The process of molting and replacing the cuticle is called ecdysis, which is how the superphylum derived its name.

    Contributors and Attributions

    CC licensed content, Original
    • Introduction to Superphylum Ecdysozoa. Authored by: Shelli Carter and Lumen Learning. Provided by: Lumen Learning. License: CC BY: Attribution
    CC licensed content, Shared previously

    14.15: Introduction to Superphylum Ecdysozoa is shared under a not declared license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by LibreTexts.

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