Acorn worms

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Enteropneusta (acorn worms) A phylum of free-living, elongate, worm-like, burrowing marine animals, formerly included in the phylum Hemichordata, in which the body is clearly divided into a proboscis (protosoma), collar (mesosoma), and trunk (metasoma). The stomochord extends into the proboscis. The branchial apparatus is well developed, consisting of a long, double row of pores strengthened by a cuticular skeleton (thought to be homologous with the pharyngeal gill clefts of Chordata). The nervous system is notoneural. There are many living genera. No fossil examples are known.

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acorn worms See ENTEROPNEUSTA.