Journal of Cave and Karst Studies - ISSN 1090-6924
Volume 63 Number 3: 99-104 -December 2001

A publication of the National Speleological Society

First records of freshwater oligochaetes (Annelida, Clitellata) from caves in Illinois and Missouri, USA
Mark J. Wetzel and Steven J. Taylor


Aquatic oligochaetes were collected from the fine sediments of eight cave streams in Illinois and Missouri from June 1998 through January 2000. Five families, 9 genera, and 15 taxa are reported. Rhyacodrilus subterraneus (Tubificidae) represents a new state record for Illinois, and 10 species—Dero digitata, D. nivea, and Pristina leidyi (Naididae) and Limnodrilus cervix, L. hoffmeisteri, L. udekemianus, Rhyacodrilus falciformis, R. sodalis, R. subterraneus, and Varichaetadrilus angustipenis (Tubificidae)—represent new state records for Missouri. Of the species collected, Haplotaxis cf. gordioides (Haplotaxidae), P. leidyi, and L. hoffmeisteri, R. falciformis, R. subterraneus, and Tubifex tubifex (Tubificidae) have previously been reported from caves in North America. These are the first published records of freshwater oligochaetes in caves of Illinois and Missouri.

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