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Nine Major Animal Phyla

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There are nine major animal phyla (actually there are over thirty that are recognized by taxonomists so consider yourself getting off lucky). Choose two phyla that you find particularly interesting (while trying avoid combinations picked by other class members). Give common examples of each phylum and distinguish among them relative to types of tissues/tissue layers (none, diplobastic, triplobastic), body symmetry (assymetrical, radial symmetry, and bilateral symmetry) and presence and type of body cavity (acoelomate, pseudocoelomate, coelomate). Be careful not to confuse digestive cavities with body cavities. They are very different things. Briefly, discuss why the phyla would be similar or different for these characters based on evolutionary relationships and environmental influences.

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Solution Summary

This solution discusses two of the major nine phyla. It gives common examples of each as well as distinguishing characteristics, such as types of tissue layers and body symmetry. This solution is 220 words and there are also links included for any further information needed.

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Phylum Mollusca: examples Clams and Octopus
The members of the phylum mollusca are bilaterally symmetrical, coelomates that have triploblastic tissue (Ramel nd).

Phylum Chordata: examples humans and rats
The members of phylum chordata are bilaterally symmetrical, coelomates that have triploblastic tissue (Myers 2001).

Both of these phyla have body cavities, but the mollusks have a reduced body cavity, which is limited to the area around the heart (Farabee 2005).

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