Melinna palmata can be up to 55 mm long. The distribution of this species in Norway is limited to a few unconfirmed records in the Oslofjord.

Type locality

St. Malo, France.

Key characters

Fig. 1. Anterior end, dorsolateral view Arrow denotes postbranchial hook. Dorsal crest scalloped.

Measurements: Up to 55 mm long

Number of thoracic chaetigers: 18

Number of thoracic uncinigers: 14

Number of abdominal uncinigers: About 60.

Prostomium: With well-defined anterior and posterior parts, separated by pair of deep transverse nuchal grooves that nearly meet mid-dorsally; numerous eyespots present.

Mouth tentacles: Numerous, equally sized and smooth.

Branchiae: Four pairs in two basally fused groups; three branchiae in each group in oblique row slanting posteriorly towards mid-dorsum, fourth branchia in front of the middle one of the three.

Postbranchial hooks: Narrow base and gently curved tip.

Postbranchial depression: Unknown.

Dorsal crest: Scalloped (with semicircles).

Special features: Fourth thoracic chaetiger without neurochaetae.

Pygidium: Without lateral cirri.

Tube: Thin layer of organic secretion incrusted with mud.

Distribution

No confirmed records from Norway

Remarks

The records of this species from Norway (Oslofjord) cannot be confirmed since the specimens appear to have been lost (Hjertager, 1998).

Similar species

Melinna palmata is very similar to Melinna cristata. It can be separated from M. cristata by the absence of neurochaetae on the fourth thoracic chaetiger and the scalloped dorsal crest, since M. cristata has neurochaetae on the fourth thoracic chaetiger and has a serrated dorsal crest.

Sources

Grube AE (1870). Ueber seinen Aufenthalt in St. Malo, besonders über zwei noch nicht beschriebene Anneliden. [Also known as: 'Über zwei neue anneliden von St. Malo (Melinna palmata, Ereutho serrisetis)'.]. Jahres-Bericht der Schlesischen Gesellschaft für Vaterländische Cultur, Breslau 47: 68-69. https://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/page/46566678

Hjertager A (1998). Arter i underfamilien Melinninae (Polychaeta: Ampharetidae) i norske farvann (inkl. Svalbard) og enkelte tilgrensende områder. Candidatus scientiarum thesis. NTNU. Trondheim.

Holthe T (1986a). Polychaeta Terebellomorpha. Marine Invertebrates of Scandinavia 7: 1-192.

Personal observations, Alvestad T.

Fig. 3. Anterior end (head), dorsolateral view.