BIOTIC Species Information for Pygospio elegans
Researched byDan Bayley Data supplied byMBA
Refereed byThis information is not refereed.
Scientific namePygospio elegans Common nameA bristleworm
MCS CodeP775 Recent SynonymsPygospio minutus, Spio inversa, Spio rathbuni

PhylumAnnelida Subphylum
Superclass ClassPolychaeta
Subclasscanalipalpata OrderSpionida
Suborder FamilySpionidae
GenusPygospio Specieselegans

Additional Information
Taxonomy References Howson & Picton, 1997, Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Fish & Fish, 1996, Fauchald, 1977,
General Biology
Growth formTubicolous
Vermiform segmented
Feeding method
Environmental positionInfaunal
Typical food types Habit
Bioturbator Flexibility
Fragility SizeSmall(1-2cm)
Height Growth Rate
Adult dispersal potential Dependency
General Biology Additional Information
Biology References Hayward & Ryland, 1990, , Giangrande, 1997,
Distribution and Habitat
Distribution in Britain & IrelandAll Great Britain
Global distributionNorth-East Atlantic, Mediterranean, North Pacific.
Biogeographic rangeTemperate Depth range
MigratoryNon-migratory / Resident   
Distribution Additional Information

Substratum preferencesMud
Sandy mud
Crevices / fissures
Physiographic preferences
Biological zoneSublittoral Fringe
Mid Eulittoral
Wave exposure
Tidal stream strength/Water flow Salinity
Habitat Preferences Additional Information
Distribution References Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Fish & Fish, 1996, Fauchald, 1977, Picton & Costello, 1998, JNCC, 1999, Bruce et al., 1963, Giangrande, 1997,
Reproduction/Life History
Reproductive typeGonochoristic
Developmental mechanismPlanktotrophic
Direct Development
Reproductive SeasonDecember-May or January-August Reproductive LocationAdult burrow
Reproductive frequency Regeneration potential No
Life span1 year Age at reproductive maturity<1 year
Generation time<1 year Fecundity46- to 2000 eggs per spawning event
Egg/propagule size300 µ m diameter Fertilization typeExternal
Larval/Juvenile dispersal potential Larval settlement period
Duration of larval stage   
Reproduction Preferences Additional InformationAfter intratubular brooding, in some populations the larvae emerge and become planktotrophic, remaining pelagic from the 3-20 setiger range development. Other populations are lecithotropic/direct development.
Reproduction References Giangrande, 1997, Gudmundsson, 1985, Jones and Frid, 2009,
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