This weeks Spineless Song is a collaboration with Christopher Taylor from the Catalogue of Organisms. He wrote all of the words (though I tweaked 1 or 2 here and there) and I did the music. As always, the song is in the sidebar.
Brachiopods (arm-foot) are not only weird, they are freakin' weird. They are members of the clade Lophophorata (fun to say!) meaning they possess a special organ called a lophophore. This odd organ fuctions in feeding and the structure is shared with ectoprocts (a.k.a. bryozoans, the mossimals) and phoronids (Mr. Byrnes do you still have My Phoronid online??).
Ballad of the Inarticulate Brachiopod
I am an inarticulate Brachiopod form
Just an ordinary linguloid trying to keep to the norm
I keep my bauplan unchanged hundreds, millions of years
While articulates diverge madly, I prefer a lower gear
Phosphatocopids, Hyolithelminthes no longer here with me,
And yet I still wear phosphate no carbonate you see
Those aragonitic taxa with their diversity of forms,
May think themselves above me, may think they've won the war.
But I'll bet you dimes to horseshoes that when they've had their run
I'll still be here just simply unaltered in the mud.