Family Onchulidae

Revised 12/01/20







Onchulidae Andrassy, 1963

Species of the family Onchulidae are quite rare but have been found in moist soil, moss and freshwater habitats.  They have been recorded in all continents except Antarctica.

Most of the species are known only from a single record or few records.

Onchulidae can be recognized from othe families of the Tripyloidea (Tripylidae and Trischistomatidae) by the two whorls of cephalic setae, the large buccal tooth, shape of the buccal cavity, the unusual pattern of alternaticn glandular and muscular tissue in the esophagus and the lack of a spinneret on the tail.

The greatest diversity of genera and species of onchulids occurs in tropical regions of the world, including equatorial Africa and Central and South America (Holovachov et  al. 2008).

Nematodes of the Onchulidae are predominantly predatory, feeding on other nematodes, rotifers, but also on bacteria and can be omnivorous, depending on species, developmental stage and environmental conditions (Holovachov et al. 2008).


Ref Holovachov and Shoshin (2014), Andrassy, 2007


Andrassy, I. 2007. Free-living nematodes of Hungary (Nematoda, Errantia), II. Hungarian Natural History Museum, Budapest, Hungary. 496 pp.

Holovachov, O., A Shoshin. 2014,  7.4 Order Triplonchida Cobb, 1919,  Handbook of Zoology. Gastrotricha ,

Holovachov, O., Winiszewska, G., Sturhan, D., Esquivel, A. & Wu, J. 2008: New genus, three new and two known species of the family Onchulidae Andr ssy, 1964 with notes on systematics and biology of the family. J. Nematode Morphol. Syst. 11:1-30.


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