polyp and medusa
Introduction polyp and medusa,
names for the two body forms, one nonmotile and one typically free swimming, found in the aquatic invertebrate phylum Cnidaria
(the coelenterates). Some animals of this group are always polyps, some are always medusae, and some exhibit both a polyp and a medusa stage in their life cycle. The polyp is a sessile, or nonmotile, organism; well-known solitary polyps are the sea anemone
and the freshwater hydra
. The medusa, when free swimming, is popularly known as a jellyfish
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