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Flat Earth Academy- Science

Biology: Chordata- a phylum of the animal kingdom

This is a work in progress... please bear with me, come back and watch it grow? Send constructive suggestions?

What you see below might be seen as an outline for what will eventually be spread across multiple pages.

The following cheats some groups of animals by lumping in that "misc" group... and I may "promote" some of them in due course... but for now, here are some important groups for you to know about.

The chordata are a phylum (next level subdivision) of the animal kingdom. We are in this phylum, by the way.

The Vertebrates

The chordate phylum is split up into a number of different classes. The one the you really ought to pay considerable attention to is the vertebrates.

As long as you promise to remember that vertebrates are not the only chordates, I will forgive you if you decide not to learn much about the other chordates. Just for the sake of "completeness", I will tell you a bit about some of the others. For each, I've given you the Wikipedia entry, if you wish to know more.

The Flat Earth Academy is not trying to be Yet Another Wikipedia, by the way. I strongly encourage you to go to Wikipedia, graze in the fields of near limitless knowledge. But if you work through what the Flat Earth Academy offers, you will, I hope, feel that you are building a framework of basic knowledge. Without the framework, whatever you can manage to retain from Wikipedia browsing will only ever be just so many scraps of paper with little factoids scribbled on them.

Non- vertebrate chordates

The ones covered in a moment are....

Tunicates:The tunicates are the sea squirts and relatives. About 3,000 species. They start life as something a bit like a tadpole. Many end up as blobby things attached to the sea floor. Perhaps not very interesting to look at... but maybe interesting that they should be considered close relatives of the vertebrates. Why? Not something you need to know, but it might be fun to look into it one day.

Hagfish: If you like "icky", these may be of interest to you. You can learn more at the Wikipedia Hagfish entry. They aren't true fish, but they do look a bit like an eel.

Lancelets: The lancelets look a bit like a minnow, at first glace. A big one grows to about 7cm. However, although they have "front" end, they are essentially headless. Also, they have no fins, nor any calcium strengthened bones. So they may be similar to minnows, perhaps, but lack essentials when you look closely. Hence they are in the chordates phylum, but not even the vertebrate class, let alone the fish order. (I've done a separate page about kingdom/ phylum/ class/ order/ family/ species, which you ought to look at sometime. Doesn't need to be "now".)

This page is still under construction. Complain if this note hasn't been updated by 22 October? I hope you will agree that what is above is worth something as it stands??

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