Higgins, Robert P. Department of Invertebrate Zoology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.
Last reviewed:August 2020
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A phylum of free-living marine invertebrates less than 1 mm long. They are segmented and lack internal ciliation (see illustration). Kinorhyncha, formerly called Echinoderida, are sometimes included in the rejected superphylum Aschelminthes, since their fluid-filled body cavity is probably a pseudocoel, or false coelom. Kinorhynchs are benthonic, generally dwelling in mud or sand from intertidal to deep-sea habitats. Two orders are generally recognized, Cyclorhagida and Homalorhagida.
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