The Life of a Lamprey

Lamprey Dissection Pre-Ap Biology March 11, 2014 - GUZMAN

Lampetra fluviatilis

Lampreys (sometimes also called lamprey eels) are an order of jawless fish. They belong to the kingdom Animalia under the phylum Chordata and subphylum Cephalochordata. The adult is characterized by a toothed, funnel-like sucking mouth which can be highly parasitic to many fish species . The common name "lamprey" is probably derived from Latin lampetra, which may mean "stone licker."

While lampreys are well known for those species which bore into the flesh of other fish to suck their blood, most species of lampreys are not parasitic and never feed on other fish. The lampreys are a very ancient lineage of vertebrates, though their exact relationship to hagfishes and jawed vertebrates is still a matter of dispute.

Today's Objectives

Students will be learning about the external and internal anatomy of a lamprey. Students will focus on the organs, structures, and functions of the digestive system. Students will also understand the ecological role of the lamprey.

Evolutionary relationships of a Lamprey

Digestive System: At A Glance

Adult lampreys have a digestive system that is just the alimentary canal, which runs from the mouth to the anus. They do not have a stomach and food passes right from the esophagus to the intestine. The function of the digestive system is to ingest, digest, and abosrb food in the mouth or buccal cavity, stomach, and intestines.