The Anthomedusa in form is generally deep, bell-shaped. The sense organs are typically ocelli, never otocysts. The gonads are borne on the manubrium, either forming a continuous ring (Codonid type), or four masses or pairs of masses (Oceanid type). The tentacles may be scattered singly round the margin of the umbrella (“monerenematous”) or arranged in tufts (“lophonematous”); in form they may be simple or branched (Cladonemid type); in structure they may be hollow (“coelomerinthous”); or solid (“pycnomerinthous”). When sessile gonophores are produced, they may show all stages of degeneration.
Classification.—Until quite recently the hydroids (Gymnoblastea) and the medusae (Anthomedusae) have been classified separately, since the connexion between them was insufficiently known. Delage and Hérouard (Hydrozoa ) were the first to make an heroic attempt to unite the two classifications into one, to which Hickson (Hydrozoa ) has made some additions and slight modifications. The classification given here is for the most part that of Delage and Hérouard. It is certain, however, that no such classification can be considered final at present, but must undergo continual revision in the future. With this reservation we may recognize fifteen well-characterized families and others of more doubtful nature. Certain discrepancies must also be noted.
1. Margelidae (= medusa-family Margelidae + hydroid families Bougainvillidae, Dicorynidae, Bimeridae and Eudendridae). Trophosome arborescent, with hydranths of Bougainvillea-type; gonosome free medusae or gonophores, the medusae with solid tentacles in tufts (lophonematous). Common genera are the hydroid Bougainvillea (figs. 12, 13), and the medusae Hippocrene (budded from Bougainvillea), Margelis, Rathkea (fig. 24), and Margellium. Other hydroids are Garveia, Bimeria, Eudendrium and Heterocordyle, with gonophores, and Dicoryne with peculiar sporosacs.
After Haeckel, System der Medusen, by permission of Gustav Fischer.
|Fig. 52.—Tiara pileata, L. Agassiz.|
2. Podocorynidae (= medusa-families Thamnostomidae and Cytaeidae + hydroid families Podocorynidae and Hydractiniidae). Trophosome encrusting with hydranths of Bougainvillea-type, polyps differentiated into blastostyles, gastrozoids and dactylozoids; gonosome free medusae or gonophores. The typical genus is the well-known hydroid Podocoryne, budding the medusa known as Dysmorphosa; Thamnostylus, Cytaeis, &c., are other medusae with unknown hydroids. Hydractinia (figs. 9, 10) is a familiar hydroid genus, bearing gonophores.
3. Cladonemidae.—Trophosome, polyps with two whorls of tentacles, the lower filiform, the upper capitate; gonosome, free medusae, with tentacles solid and branched. The type-genus Cladonema (fig. 20) is a common British form.
4. Clavatellidae.—Trophosome, polyps with a single whorl of capitate tentacles; gonosome, free medusae, with tentacles branched, solid. Clavatella (fig. 21), with a peculiar ambulatory medusa is a British form.
5. Pennariidae.—Trophosome, polyps with an upper circlet of numerous capitate tentacles, and a lower circlet of filiform tentacles. Pennaria, with a free medusa known as Globiceps, is a common Mediterranean form. Stauridium (fig. 2) is a British hydroid.
6. Tubulariidae.—Trophosome, polyps with two whorls of tentacles, both filiform. Tubularia (fig. 4), a well-known British hydroid, bears gonophores.
7. Corymorphidae (including the medusa-family Hybocodonidae).—Trophosome solitary polyps, with two whorls of tentacles; gonosome, free medusae or gonophores. Corymorpha (fig. 3), a well-known British genus, sets free a medusa known as Steenstrupia (fig. 22). Here belong the deep-sea genera Monocaulus and Branchiocerianthus, including the largest hydroid polyps known, both genera producing sessile gonophores.
After Haeckel, System der Medusen, by permission of Gustav Fischer.
Fig. 53.—Pteronema darwinii. The apex of the stomach is prolonged into a brood pouch containing embryos.
8. Dendroclavidae.—Trophosome, polyp with filiform tentacles in three or four whorls. Dendroclava, a hydroid, produces the medusa known as Turritopsis.
9. Clavidae (including the medusa-family Tiaridae (figs. 27 and 51). Trophosome, polyps with scattered filiform tentacles; gonosome, medusae or gonophores, the medusae with hollow tentacles. Clava (fig. 5), a common British hydroid, produces gonophores; so also does Cordylophora, a form inhabiting fresh or brackish water. Turris produces free medusae. Amphinema is a medusan genus of unknown hydroid.
10. Bythotiaridae.—Trophosome unknown; gonosome, free medusae, with deep, bell-shaped umbrella, with interradial gonads on the base of the stomach, with branched radial canals, and correspondingly numerous hollow tentacles. Bythotiara, Sibogita.
11. Corynidae (= hydroid families Corynidae, Syncorynidae and Cladocorynidae + medusan family Sarsiidae).—Trophosome polyps with capitate tentacles, simple or branched, scattered or verticillate; gonosome, free medusae or gonophores. Coryne, a common British hydroid, produces gonophores; Syncoryne, indistinguishable from it, produces medusae known as Sarsia (fig. 51). Cladocoryne is another hydroid genus; Codonium and Dipurena (fig. 50) are medusan genera.
12. Myriothelidae.—The genus Myriothela is a solitary polyp with scattered capitate tentacles, producing sporosacs.
13. Hydrolaridae.—Trophosome (only known in one genus), polyps with two tentacles forming a creeping colony; gonosome, free medusae with four, six or more radial canals, giving off one or more lateral branches which run to the margin of the umbrella, with the stomach produced into four, six or more lobes, upon which the gonads are developed; the mouth with four lips or with a folded margin; the tentacles simple, arranged evenly round the margin of the umbrella. The remarkable hydroid Lar (fig. 11) grows upon the tubes of the worm Sabella and produces a medusa known as Willia. Another medusan genus is Proboscidactyla.
14. Monobrachiidae.—The genus Monobrachium is a colony-forming hydroid which grows upon the shells of bivalve molluscs, each polyp having but a single tentacle. It buds medusae, which, however, are as yet only known in an immature condition (C. Mereschkowsky ).
15. Ceratellidae.—Trophosome polyps forming branching colonies of which the stem and main branches are thick and composed of a network of anastomosing coenosarcal tubes covered by a common ectoderm and supported by a thick chitinous perisarc; hydranths similar to those of Coryne; gonosome, sessile gonophores. Ceratella, an exotic genus from the coast of East Africa, New South Wales and Japan. The genera Dehitella Gray and Dendrocoryne Inaba should perhaps be referred to this family; the last-named is regarded by S. Goto  as the type of a distinct family, Dendrocorynidae.
Doubtful families, or forms difficult to classify, are: Pteronemidae, Medusae of Cladonemid type, with hydroids for the most part unknown. The British genus Gemmaria, however, is budded from a hydroid referable to the family Corynidae. Pteronema (fig. 53).
Nemopsidae, for the floating polyp Nemopsis, very similar to Tubularia in character; the medusa, on the other hand, is very similar to Hippocrene (Margelidae). See C. Chun (Hydrozoa ).
Pelagohydridae, for the floating polyp Pelagohydra, Dendy, from New Zealand. The animal is a solitary polyp bearing a great number of medusa-buds. The body, representing the hydranth of an ordinary hydroid, has the aboral portion modified into a float, from which hangs down a proboscis bearing the mouth. The float is covered with long tentacles and bears the medusa-buds. The proboscis bears at its extremity a circlet of smaller oral tentacles. Thus the affinities of the hydranth are clearly, as Dendy points out,