Pseudobiceros hancockanus



Pseudobiceros_hancockanus.jpg

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Platyhelminthes
Class: Rhabditophora
Order: Polycladida
Family: Pseudocerotidae
Genus: pseudobiceros
Species: Pseudobiceros hancockanus

Of the many species of flatworms in the platyhelminthes phylum, those in the sub order Acotylea are the largest. The Pseudobiceros hancockanus can grow up to 6in across and 2ft long.

Habitat:
They live in tropical waters and are found in the coral reefs of Fiji, Indonesia, Marshall Islands, Philippines, Singapore, Japan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Australia, Kenya.They swim by undulating the edges of its body.



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Nutrition and Defense:
Pseudobiceros hancockanus are predators that feed on a large variety of organisms. They feed on protozoa, copepods, other marine worms, mollusks, and immobile animals such as byozoans and ascidians. One of their extraordinary diets are giant clams! Because their bodies are soft, they can easily squeeze into the clam and eat it from inside. They avoid predators by squeezing into cracks in rocks.


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Reproduction:
Like most flatworms, Pseudobiceros hancockanus are hermaphrodites. They have most male and female reproductive organs. When two worms mate, they get into a phenomenon called penis fencing. Their penises (2) will erect from under their bellies and they will try to "stab" each other. The first one to penetrate the other wins will secretes its semen and become the father. The semen will be adsorbed by the skin of the loser forcing it to carry the burden of mother-ship.
The eggs will be laid under rocks after a few weeks, the baby worms will come out.

Flatworm_sex.png flatworm-penis-fencing1.jpg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5fx-YgcP8Gg&feature=related

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