Ophelia

A Intermediate genera from the “Annelids” group, mostly found in Sand

Sand

Intermediate

Annelids

Genera Characteristics Recorded Traits Possible Values
Size in cm
  • 1-10 cm
  • <1 cm
  • 1-10 cm
  • 11-20 cm
  • >20 cm
Genera Characteristics Recorded Traits Possible Values
Motility (Adult)
  • Short Range Mobility
  • Adult
  • Short Range Mobility
  • Sedentary

“Short Range Mobility”

Motility (Larval)
  • Short Term Planktonic
  • Long Term Planktonic
  • Short Term Planktonic
  • Brooded or Laid Eggs

“Short Term Planktonic”

Lifespan
  • 3-10 years
  • >10 years
  • 3-10 years
  • 1-2 years
  • <1 year
Maturity
  • 1-2 years
  • >4 years
  • 3-4 years
  • 1-2 years
  • <1 year
Fecundity
  • 100 - 1000 (Estimated)
  • 1 - 10
  • 10 - 100
  • 100 - 1000
  • 1000 - 10000
  • 10000 - 1 million
  • > 1 million

estimated

Image: Ophelia © MES

Vulnerability

Ophelia is a small-medium sized free-living polychaete worm belonging to the Family Opheliidae. It & related genera reach 3-10cm in length & burrow in unconsolidated mixed to medium coarse sands where they are deposit-feeders exploiting diatoms & detritus within the sediments. Ophelia has moderate mobility within the surface deposits, but is vulnerable to dredging. It normally lives in mobile sands & is likely to be able to accommodate moderate deposition of sand mobilised during the dredging process.

 

Recoverability

The life-span of Ophelia is 6-10yrs, & adults mature at 1-2yrs. The sexes are separate & eggs of 0.13-0.15mm diameter are fertilised externally after spawning in July-August. The duration of the larval stage is 2-10 days with settlement occurring between June-November. Little is known of the fecundity of this genus, but the relatively short planktonic phase & long life-span of the adult suggests a low-intermediate potential for recolonisation & subsequent recovery of biomass.
 

References

  • Biology

    • Barnes, 1965
    • Fauchald & Jumars, 1979
    • Fish & Fish, 1996
    • Julie Bremner, unpub data
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
  • Taxonomy

    • Howson & Picton, 1997
  • Distribution

    • Fish & Fish, 1996
    • Julie Bremner, unpub data
    • MBA, 1957
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
  • Reproduction

    • Fish & Fish, 1996
    • Giangrande, 1997
    • Hayward et al., 1996
    • Julie Bremner, unpub data
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
    • Rouse & Pleijel, 2001
    • Thorson, 1946
    • Thorson, 1946