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The prostomium tapers to an anterior median antenna and
nuchal organs are present as a pair of large occipital crests.
Palps and paired antennae are absent. A single median
antenna is present in two (Travisiopsis and Typhloscolex) of
the three known genera. A muscular eversible
pharynx is present, but terminal papillae have not been
observed; jaws are lacking. A glandular organ of unknown
function, termed the retort organ, lies in the dorsal wall of the
pharynx. Two or three anteriormost segments each carry a
pair of leaf-like cirri which enclose the prostomium laterally.
The parapodia are biramous; the neuropodia are larger than
the notopodia. Aciculae and chaetae, as
capillaries and spines, are present. There is a pair of pygidial
The above description is taken from Wilson (2000), which in turn follows that of Fauchald &
Recognising the family Distinguishing species
The above description is taken from Wilson (2000), which in turn follows that of Fauchald & Rouse (1997).
Recognising the family