The Biology of Chordates

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The Phylum Chordata includes tunicates, sea lancelets, hagfish, and all familiar vertebrate animals. This program explores how these seemingly diverse animals evolved and how the group is unified by four characteristic structures: a hollow dorsal nerve chord, a supportive notochord, gill slits, and a post-anal tail. Key milestones in vertebrate evolution included improvements in swimming and feeding, the evolution of paired fins and primitive lung, movement onto the land, and the role of the amniotic egg. The Chordates Image Bank with 70 still images is organized for lecture, discussion and review plus the PDF teaching guide is included on the DVD.

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