In cases where the cormus has no pneumatophore the topmost swimming bell may contain an oil-reservoir or oleocyst.
The pneumatophore or air-bladder (fig.
- Porpita, seen from above, keeps the cormus at or showing the pneumatophore and exnear the surface of the panded palpons.
As in the analogous swim-bladder of fishes, the gas in the pneumatophore can be secreted or absorbed, whereby the specific gravity of the body can be diminished or increased, so as to cause it to float nearer the surface or at a deeper level.
Never more than one pneumatophore is found in a cormus, and when present it is always situated at the highest point above the swimming bells, if these are present also.
In Velella the pneumatophore becomes of complex structure and sends air-tubes, lined by a chitin and resembling tracheae, down into the compact coenosarc, thus evidently serving a respiratory as well as a hydrostatic function.
Woltereck , on the other hand, have shown that the ectodermal pit which gives rise to the pneumatophore represents an entocodon.
Haeckel regards it as the equivalent of the manubrium, and as it is implanted on the blind end of the pneumatophore, such a view leads necessarily to the air-sack and gland being a development on the ex-umbral surface of the medusa-person.
- Upper sur- sisting of a bract, siphon, tentacle and face of Velella, showing gonophore; when free it is known as pneumatophore and sail.
The subsequent development is slightly different according as the future cormus is headed by a pneumatophore (Physophorida, Cystophorida) or by a nectocalyx (Calycophorida).
The planula develops, on the whole, in a similar manner, but the ectodermal invagination arises, not at the pole of the planula, but on the side of its broader portion, and gives rise, not to a pneumatophore, but to a nectocalyx, the primary swimming bell or protocodon (" Fallschirm ") which is later thrown off and replaced by secondary swimming bells, metacodons, budded from the coenosarc.
The ectoderm is indicated by close hatching, the endoderm by light hatching, the mesogloea by thick black lines, the horny skeleton of the pneumatophore and sail by dotting.
PN', concentric chamber of EC, Edge of colony prolonged bethe pneumatophore, showing yond the pneumatophore.
An opening to the exterior S From a comparison of the two embryological types there can be no doubt on two points; first, that the pneumatophore and the protocodon are strictly homologous, and, therefore if the nectocalyx is comparable to the umbrella of a medusa, as seems obvious, the pneumatophore must be so too; secondly, that the coenosarcal axis arises from the ex-umbrella of the medusa and cannot be compared to a manubrium, but is strictly comparable to the " bud-spike " of a Narcomedusan.
Woltereck considers the siphonophores most nearly allied to the Narcomedusae, producing like the buds from an aboral stolon, the first bud being represented by the pneumatophore or protocodon, in different cases.
If sterile they remain attached and locomotor in function, forming the nectosome, the pneumatophore and swimming-bells.
In such forms as Velella, Porpita, &c., the ancestor was an eight-rayed medusa (Disconula) which acquired a pneumatophore as an ectodermal pit on the ex-umbrella, and in which the organs (manubrium, tentacles, &c.) became secondarily multiplied, just as they do in Gastroblasta as the result of incomplete fission.
With an apical chambered pneumatophore, from which tracheal tubes may take origin (fig.
70); no nectocalyces or bracts; appendages all on the lower side of the pneumatophore arising from a compact coenosarc, and consisting of a central After C. Gegenbaur.
Without pneumatophore, with one, two, rarely more nectocalyces.
With an apical pneumatophore, not divided into chambers, followed by a series of nectocalyces or bracts.
The Auronectae are peculiar deep-sea forms, little known except from Haeckel's descriptions, in which the large pneumatophore has a peculiar duct, termed the aurophore, placed on its lower side in the midst of a circle of swimming-bells.
With a very large pneumatophore not divided into chambers, but without nectocalyces or bracts.