Distinguishing features of organisms in the Phylum Echinodermata include a lack of body segmentation, radial symmetry and life adaptations for marine environments. The Phylum Echinodermata includes more than 6,000 different species. Most organisms in this category take the form of starfish and have endoskeletons, which appear in humans, too, and give organisms the ability to move and grow.Continue Reading
Of all the phyla in the animal kingdom, the Phylum Echinodermata most closely resembles the Phylum Chordata, which includes humans. Echinoderms, like humans, have distinct spinal columns. They have coeloms deriving from digestive tubes, which resembles the internal digestive system of humans and many animals. Like people, organisms in the Phylum Echinodermata contain endoskeletons that form primarily from hard, dense calcium carbonate. Sharp spikes radiate out from the skeletons of echinoderms, giving them a distinct appearance.
In addition to starfish, this phylum includes other aquatic species too, such as sea cucumbers, brittle stars and sand dollars. While some, like starfish, contain projecting arms, others have a pentameral design. This design features a body symmetry of five equally sized parts. Echinoderms derive nutrients and water through a water-vascular system. This system involves a network of internal canals that breaks into smaller channels internally, culminating in tube feet. A feature unique to echinoderms is the ability to regenerate organs and limbs upon damage or loss.Learn more about Biology
Porifera, which means pore bearer, is a phylum that includes the organisms known as sponges. Sponges consist of a jelly-like substance between two layers of cells and are found in freshwater and marine habitats.Full Answer >
Annelids share the common characteristics of size and symmetry and have body walls and coeloms. Although they vary widely in habitat area and live in different environments around the world, annelids have structured nervous systems, sense organs, circulation and respiratory structures and segmented organs.Full Answer >
The main characteristics of the phylum Basidiomycota include the formation of basidia on a fruiting body and the development of basidiospores, according to the Tree of Life Web Project. The basidiospores germinate to form septate hyphae or yeast cells.Full Answer >
The branch of science known as ecology has to do with the study of the distributions and relationships of living organisms, including humans, within their surrounding environments. Ecologists refer to the system of interdependence between organisms and their environments as the ecosystem, and understanding the dynamics of the world's ecosystems is an important aspect of ecology.Full Answer >