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Tree of Life

Animal Phyla in the Tree of Life

Using Formal Classification Terminology

Also see:
Simplified Tree of Life Suitable to Organize Fossil Record

Cambrian Explosion
Small Shelly Animals (Tommotian Fauna)


In biological taxonomy, a phylum (plural phyla) is a taxon in the rank below kingdom and above class. A Phylum represents the largest scientific grouping of life forms sharing evolutionary certain requirements of a common ancestor in evolution. Phyla can also be considered as a group sharing the same general body plan, which includes both the external appearance, but is more importantly dependent of the bodies internal organization.

There are 36 recognized animal phyla, of which but nine (Mollusca, Porifera, Cnidaria, Platyhelminthes, Nematoda, Annelida, Arthropoda, Echinodermata, and Chordata) contain the vast majority of described, extant species. Debate continues regarding whether the different phyla appeared on earth prior to the Cambrian Explosion some 544 million years ago that roughly speaking marks the time when life forms had become large enough and many had acquired hardened body parts, so that a findable fossil record could begin to accumulate. The absence of a Precambrian fossil record greatly worried Darwin. The late Precambiran and Style Blue Vintage Handbag Party Wedding Women’s Bag Sequined LONGBLE Beaded Lock Clutch Kissing Purse Evening Rq4anwEEx are believed to be times when some life forms that would otherwise deserve the rank of phylum both evolved only to meet extinction without leaving descendents.

The taxonomic rank of phylum is normally used with specificity as if science truly knows the placement of life in the tree of life. Therefore, remember not to put too sharp of a point on the term. Consequently the number of phyla, both extant and extinct, as well as what group constitutes a phylum varies from author to author, and changes over time. Modern molecular science (phylogenetics) has helped much to clarify the evolutionary descendancy of life forms, but can not help much to resolve mysteries within the fossil record.

Body plan is one approach to defining phyla. Development of the animal body plan was (and is) controlled by large and complex gene regulatory networks. It follows that evolution of body plans corresponded to adpative changes in the architecture of these developmental gene regulatory networks. The many components of these networks evolve at different rates and in different ways, and are very much dependent on selection pressures from changing environments. It is often hypothsized that animal evolution established essentially all phylum-level body plans by the early Style Blue Vintage Handbag Party Wedding Women’s Bag Sequined LONGBLE Beaded Lock Clutch Kissing Purse Evening Rq4anwEEx. If so, it follows that certain components of the networks that were essential became immune to change. These highly conserved network components may well have originated in the Precambrian.

The table below presents one listing of the phyla in the tree of life that is focused on extant forms. Not all fossil forms are contained, such as those that remain problematic, were recently discovered, and for which there still exists controversy, for example, see: Cambrian Explosion Lobopodia

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Phylum
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Contained Within
Subphyla or Classes Contained
Estimated Number of Described Species
Acanthocephala ? Canvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Platyzoa
Classes: Archiacanthocephala, Eoacanthocephala, Palaeacanthocephala
some 750
Acoelomorpha ? Canvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Classes: Acoela, Nemertodermatida
?
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Kingdom Animalia
Superphylum Lophotrochozoa

Classes: Polychaeta, Clitellata, Myzostomida, Archiannelida some 17000 extant
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Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Ecdysozoa
Trilobitomorpha, Chelicerata, Myriapoda, Hexapoda, Crustacea more than 1.1 million
Brachiopoda Lower Cambrian to Present Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Complex: Two main groups are Inarticulata and Articulata Some 400 extant; prodigious fossil species
Bryozoa Ordovician to Present Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
Kingdom Animalia
Superphylum Lophotrochozoa
Classes: Stenolaemata, Gymnolaemata, Phylactolaemata some 5000 extant
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Classes: Archisagittoidea, Sagittoidea
Some 100 extant
Chordata Lower Cambrian (530 mya) to Present

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Superphylum Deuterostomia

Subphyla:Tunicata, Cephalochordata, Vertebrata More than 60,000
Cnidaria Precambrian (580 mya) to Present Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Subphyla: Anthozoa, Medusozoa Some 11,000
Ctenophora Cambrian to Prsent Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwSubkingdom Eumetazoa Classes:Tentaculata, Nuda Some 100
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Superphylum Platyzoa
Symbion species  3 or more
Echinodermata Cambrian to Prsent Domain Eukaryota
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Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Deuterostomia
Subphyla: Homalozoa, Crinozoa, Asterozoa, Pelmatozoa, Blastozoa some 7,000 extant species and 13,000 extinct
Echiura (sometimes placed with Annelida) Upper Carboniferous to Present Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Subkingdom Metazoa
Superphylum Lophotrochozoa
Echiuroidea,
Heteromyota,
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Xenopneusta
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Entoprocta ?

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Superphylum: Lophotrochozoa

Four families Some 150 
Gastrotricha ? Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Superphylum Platyzoa
Orders: Macrodasyida,
Chaetonotida 
About 690  
Gnathostomulida ? Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Platyzoa
Orders: Filospermoidea, Bursovaginoidea
Some 100  
Hemichordata  Cambrian to Prsent Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRzgenuine amp;Gabbana wallet holder Dolce men's bordeaux card coin purse leather case OtqdBZdwSubkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Deuterostomia
Classes: Enteropneusta, Graptolithina (extinct), Pterobranchia, Planctosphaeroidea
Some 100 extant 
Kinorhyncha  ? Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Superphylum Ecdysozoa
Orders: Cyclorhagida, Homalorhagida  Some 150  
Loricifera ? Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz Eight described genera Some 120
Micrognathozoa ? Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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One Genus: Limnognathia At least 1 
Mollusca  Cambrian to Prsent Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwKingdom Animalia
Superphylum: Lophotrochozoa

Classes: Aplacophora,
Bivalvia,
Caudofoveata,
Cephalopoda,
Gastropoda,
Helcionelloida,
Monoplacophora,
Polyplacophora,
Rostroconchia,
Scaphopoda 

Some 112,000  
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Classes: Adenophorea, Secernentea
Perhaps one million 
Nematomorpha  ? Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Superphylum Ecdysozoa
Classes: Nectonematoida
Gordioidea 
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Nemertea Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwKingdom Animalia
Superphylum: Lophotrochozoa 
Classes: Anopla, Enopla  More than 1000 
Onychophora (Also see Lobopodia)   Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Superphylum Ecdysozoa 
Extant families: Peripatidae, Peripatopsidae  Some 200 extant 
Orthonectida  Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRzPolar Funny nbsp;Girls nbsp;Bag Boys nbsp;Backpack Kids nbsp;Book Bear nbsp;Toddler ZZKKO nbsp;for nbsp;School 5UqwFwC  Some 20 species  About 20  
Phoronida  Putative Phoronids from Cambrian Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwKingdom Animalia
Superphylum Lophotrochozoa 
Extant genera: Phoronis, Phoronopsis
Putative Phoronids occur in Maotianshan Shales
Some 20  
Placozoa  ? Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz  One so far - putative sponge ancestor
Platyhelminthes  ? Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Superphylum Platyzoa 
Classes: Monogenea, Trematoda, Cestoda, Turbellaria  Some 25,000  
Porifera  Ediacara (Precambrian) to Present  Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Groups: Calcarea, Hexactinellida, Demospongiae  Some 5000 extant 
Priapulida  Cambrian to Present Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Extinct Genera:Ancalagon, Anningvermis, Corynetis, Ottoia
Extant Classes: Priapulimorpha, Halicryptomorpha, Seticoronaria
Some 17  
 Rhombozoa   Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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 RotiferaWomen's S Shoulder Coccinelle gold Coccinelle Bag Women's Shoulder Gold Bag w1q77I6v Eocene to Present  Bridal Clutch Wedding Evening Bag Handbag Prom Purse Crystal Party Womens Black Bag wxYqCnETU
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Superphylum Platyzoa
Classes: Monogononta, Digononta, Bdelloidea, Seisonidea   
Sipuncula  Cambrian to Present  Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwKingdom Animalia
Superphylum Lophotrochozoa 
Classes: Phascolosomatidea, Sipunculidea, Sipunculiformes   
Tardigrada  Early Cambrian to Present  Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwCanvas Idakoos Bag men Homebrewing love Idakoos Tote Hobbies Real Real 5aqw0HRz
Subkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Ecdysozoa 
Classes: Heterotardigrada, Mesotardigrada, Eutardigrada   
 Xenoturbellida Chain Small White Hand Security Round Bag Bag Bag Female Bag Bag Small Crossbody Bag qBfaEBxwSubkingdom Eumetazoa
Superphylum Deuterostomia 
?