McLaughlin, Patsy A. Formerly, Shannon Point Marine Center, Western Washington University, Anacortes, Washington.
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One of two Recent subclasses of Ostracoda. The two (Podocopa and Myodocopa) may share many characteristics but differ significantly in others. Shared characteristics include a carapace (shell) with a straight-to-concave ventral margin and somewhat convex dorsal margin; adductor-muscle-scar patterns varying from numerous to few; the absence of an anterior notch in the bivalve shell; and the absence of lateral eyes, heart, and frontal organ (Bellonci organ). Podocopid ostracods are small, rarely exceeding 0.25 in. (7 mm). The carapace valves are unequal, weakly or strongly calcified, and may be heavily ornamented. The hinge varies from simple to complex. Six or seven pairs of appendages are present; the seventh is adapted for walking, for cleaning, or as a clasping leg in males. It is never annulated and wormlike, as in the Myodocopa. The caudal furca, when present, is lamelliform, flagellate, or footlike and ventral to the anus. In one podocopid genus the posterior part of the body is pronounced and has a pair of setae-bearing lobes, structures that have been interpreted by some researchers as representing a telson and uropods, respectively.
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