a marine invertebrate of the class Ctenophora. The flat, oval body reaches 7 cm in length; it is equipped with a pair of long, pinnate tentacles. The animal’s coloration is whitish, gray, yellow, green, or red. The mouth is in the center of the ciliated underside of the body, that is, the side on which the animal crawls. The upper side of the body bears numerous papillae. The comb plates characteristic of adult ctenophors are developed only in the larvae of Coeloplana.
There are approximately ten known species of Coeloplana. The invertebrates inhabit tropical seas. Some species live on colonies of eight-rayed corals, upon which they feed. Coeloplana were discovered in the Red Sea in 1880 by the Russian embryologist A. O. Kovalevskii. For some time, the invertebrates, along with other crawling ctenophores, were considered to be a transition form from Ctenophora to Turbellaria.
REFERENCESKowalevsky, A. “Coeloplana metschnikowii.” Zoologischer Anzeiger, 1880, vol. 3, no. 51.
Krumbach, T. “Ctenophora.” In Handbuch der Zoologie, vol. 1. Edited by W. Kükenthal. Berlin-Leipzig, 1925.
Kaestner, A. Lehrbuch der Speziellen Zoologie, 2nd ed., vol. 1, part 1. Jena, 1965.
A. V. IVANOV