Caribbean Isopod on Seafan
Posted 19 October 2012 - 10:48 PM
Posted 20 October 2012 - 08:14 AM
sadly the images no longer show for these last two posts.:
Posted 20 October 2012 - 09:33 AM
Posted 20 October 2012 - 01:23 PM
Posted 25 October 2012 - 09:04 AM
A lot of people unintentionally use "symbiotic" and "commensal" as synonyms. Symbionts are animals that live in association with another organism; the term doesn't imply anything about their relationship. Commensals are symbionts in a relationship where one benefits while the other is unaffected either negatively or positively. For example, if this isopod is protected from predation by living on the sea fan but the sea fan isn't impacted then it's a commensal association. Mutualism is where both benefit - the isopod gets protection or food while the sea fan gets cleaned of silt or gets additional nutrition from the isopod's feces. There are a lot of different types of symbiotic relationships.
Posted 29 October 2012 - 11:59 AM
(10 minutes later). She says no. Only one species out of the whole family has been kept alive in the lab so its life history could be studied. For the rest it's all guesswork as to whether they're true symbionts and the nature of the interaction with the host.
There's a little bit of general information on feeding in a recent paper by Poore & Bruce on Global Diversity of Marine Isopods. It's open access at http://www.plosone.o...al.pone.0043529