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Three new species of Aponuphis (Annelida: Onuphidae) from eastern Australia



The genus Aponuphis, previously known from the eastern North Atlantic and the Mediterranean, is newly reported from Australia. Three new species are described from off Sydney to Wollongong, New South Wales in sandy sediments, in depths of 25–70 m, bringing the number of recognized Aponuphis species to ten. Aponuphis annae n. sp. and A. bellani n. sp. are abranchiate, whilst A. danicae n. sp. has branchiae over a short region of its body. The tubes of A. annae and A. danicae have a fragile mucous consistency with attached sand grains and that of A. bellani is transparent, tight-fitting and smooth. Two specimens of A. annae were collected with developing juveniles in their tubes demonstrating their direct development but the reproductive mode of the other two species is not known. The distinguishing characteristics of all recognized species are tabled and a key to the three Australian species is presented.



Annelida, polychaetes, Eunicida, biodiversity, taxonomy, brooding, direct development, key

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