Higher Classification: > Kingdom Animalia > Phylum Annelida

Polychaeta Grube, 1850

Rank: Class
Taxon Status: accepted

note: Several minor orders presented in Fauchald (1977)are now regarded as superfluous. All orders so tagged do not have child taxa that are currently in use. Basically the classification of Rouse & Pleijel (2001: Fig.1.1) is presented here, with old name Erran


Errantia Audouin & Milne-Edwards, 1832
Polychaeta incertae sedis
Sedentaria Lamarck, 1818

Vernaculars (+) (-)

 Dutch: borstelwormen; veelborsteligen sources: Hayward, P.; Nelson-Smith, A.; Shields, C. (1999). Gids van kust en strand: flora en fauna [Coast and beach guide: flora and fauna]. Tirion: Baarn, Netherlands. ISBN 90-5210-327-5. 352, ill. pp.;Eneman, E. (1984). Uit het Natuurhistorisch Archief [From the Natural History Archive]. De Strandvlo 4(1): 4-17
 English: bristle worms sources: Hayward, P.J.; Nelson-Smith, A.; Shields, C. (1996). Collins pocket guide: sea shore of Britain and Europe. Collins pocket guides. Harper-Collins Publishers: London, UK. ISBN 0-00-219955-6. 352 pp.
 English-United States: bristle worms sources: Charles Hussey
 Swedish: havsborstmaskar


original description

Grube, A.E. 1850. Die Familien der Anneliden. Archiv für Naturgeschichte, Berlin, 16(1): 249-364.

basis of record

Margulis, L.; Schwartz, K.V. (1998). Five Kingdoms: an illustrated guide to the Phyla of life on earth. 3rd edition. Freeman: New York, NY (USA). ISBN 0-7167-3027-8. xx, 520 pp.

additional source

Bakken, Torkild; Sneli, Jon-Arne. 2009. Obituary Torleif Holthe (1946-2007). Zoosymposia 2: 13-16

additional source

Struck, T. H. 2011. Direction of evolution within Annelida and the definition of Pleistoannelida. Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research 49(4): 340-345

additional source

Simakov, Oleg; Marletaz, Ferdinand; Cho, Sung-Jin; Edsinger-Gonzales, Eric; Havlak, Paul; Hellsten, Uffe; Kuo, Dian-Han; Larsson, Tomas; Lv, Jie; Arendt, Detlev; Savage, Robert; Osoegawa, Kazutoyo; de Jong, Pieter; Grimwood, Jane; Chapman, Jarrod A.; Shapiro, Harris; Aerts, Andrea; Otillar, Robert P.; Terry, Astrid Y.; Boore, Jeffrey L.; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Lindberg, David R.; Seaver, Elaine C.; Weisblat, David A.; Putnam, Nicholas H.; Rokhsar, Daniel S. 2012. Insights into bilaterian evolution from three spiralian genomes. Nature advance online publication

additional source

Rouse, G.W.; Pleijel, F. (2001). Polychaetes. Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK [etc.]. ISBN 0-19-850608-2. 354 pp.

additional source

Brusca R.C. & Brusca G.J. (2003). Invertabrates. 2nd ed. Sinauer Associates, Inc., Sunderland, p. 936.

additional source

Rouse, G.W. and Fauchald, K. 1997. Cladistics and polychaetes. Zoologica Scripta 26(2): 139-204.

additional source

Fauchald, K. and Rouse, G.W. 1997. Polychaete systematics: Past and present. Zoologica Scripta 26(2): 71-138.

additional source

Zrzavý, J.; Xíha, P.; Piálek, L.; Janouškovec, J. (2009). Phylogeny of Annelida (Lophotrochozoa): total-evidence analysis of morphology and six genes - art. no. 189. Bmc Evolutionary Biology 9: 189-189.

additional source

Eibye-Jacobsen, Danny. 2009. Obituary Jorgen Bagger Kirkegaard (1920-2006). Zoosymposia 2: 17-20

identification resource

Wilson, Robin S.; Hutchings Pat, A.; Glasby, C. J. 2003. Polychaetes: An Interactive Identification Guide. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

identification resource

Nygren, A; Hall, R.; Pleijel, F. (2013). Bestämningsnyckel till och presentation av svenska familjer av havsborstmaskar. 89 pp. [Determination Key to polychaetes and presentation of Swedish families of polychaetes.]

identification resource

Fauvel, P. 1923. Polychètes errantes. Faune de France Volume 5. 1-488. Librairie de la Faculte des Sciences. Paris.

identification resource

Fauvel, P. 1927. Polychètes sédentaires. Addenda aux errantes, Arachiannélides, Myzostomaires. Faune de France Volume 16. 1-494. Paul Lechevalier. Paris.

identification resource

Blake, James A.; Ruff, R. Eugene (2007). Polychaeta. In: Carlton, J.T. (ed.). The Light and Smith Manual. Intertidal Invertebrates from Central California to Oregon, pp. 309-410. University of California Press, Berkeley.

identification resource

Fauchald, K. 1977. The polychaete worms, definitions and keys to the orders, families and genera. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County: Los Angeles, CA (USA) Science Series 28:1-188

identification resource

Hartmann-Schröder, G. (1996). Annelida, Borstenwürmer, Polychaeta [Annelida, bristleworms, Polychaeta]. 2nd revised ed. The fauna of Germany and adjacent seas with their characteristics and ecology, 58. Gustav Fischer: Jena, Germany. ISBN 3-437-35038-2. 648 pp.

identification resource

Day, J.H. 1967. A monograph on the Polychaeta of Southern Africa. Volume British Museum (Natural History) Publication 656. 1-878. British Museum (Natural History). London.

identification resource

Hartman, O. 1968. Atlas of the errantiate polychaetous annelids from California. 1-828. Allan Hancock Foundation, University of Southern California. Los Angeles.

identification resource

Hartman, O. 1969. Atlas of the sedentariate polychaetous annelids from California. 1-812. Allan Hancock Foundation, University of Southern California. Los Angeles.

identification resource

Jirkov, I.A. 2001. [Polychaeta of the Arctic Ocean] Polikhety severnogo Ledovitogo Okeana. Moskva, Yanus-K, 1-632

identification resource

Blake, J.A. 1994. Introduction to the Polychaeta, in J.A. Blake and B. Hilbig eds., Taxonomic Atlas of the Benthic Fauna of the Santa Maria Basin and Western Santa Barbara Channel: Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, p. 39-113.

identification resource

Uebelacker, J.M. and Johnson, P.G.1984. Taxonomic guide to the polychaetes of the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Final report to the Minerals Management service, contract 14-12-001-29091: Mobile, Barry M. Vittor & Associates.



External Links



Read, G. (2014). Polychaeta. In: Costello, M.J.; Bouchet, P.; Boxshall, G.; Arvantidis, C.; Appeltans, W. (2014) European Register of Marine Species, accessed through PESI at http://www.eu-nomen.eu/portal/taxon.php?GUID=urn:lsid:marinespecies.org:taxname:883




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Last modified

2012-02-08 by Geoffrey Read

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