Definitions for oligochaeta
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Oligochaeta, class Oligochaeta(noun)
Oligochaeta(prop. n. pl.)
An order of Annelida which includes the earthworms and related species, including some small freshwater species.
Origin: [NL., fr. Gr. 'oli`gos little, pl., few + hair.]
The Oligochaeta are a subclass of animals in the biological phylum Annelida, which is made up of many types of aquatic and terrestrial worms, and including all of the various earthworms. Specifically, the oligochaetes contain the terrestrial megadrile earthworms, and freshwater or semiterrestrial microdrile forms, including the tubificids, pot worms and ice worms, blackworms and several interstitial marine worms. With around 10,000 known species, the Oligochaeta make up about half of the phylum Annelida. These worms usually have few setae or "bristles" on their outer body surfaces, and lack parapodia, unlike polychaeta.
U.S. National Library of Medicine
A class of annelid worms with few setae per segment. It includes the earthworms such as Lumbricus and Eisenia.
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