1. The contraction of the adductor-muscle which follows stimulation of the palial nerve is preceded by a marked contraction of the ctenidial axis, so that the gill contracts before the adductor-muscle becomes active. This movement of the ctenidium is abolished if the main branchial nerve is cut near its origin.

2. The gills of Pecten possess a neuromuscular mechanism which is to some extent independent of the rest of the body, so that excised gills when stimulated react in the same way as an attached gill.

3. The lamellae of the gill possess two distinct types of movement.

(a) When the surface of the gill is stimulated by contact with a glass rod or by carmine particles, the frontal surfaces of the two lamellae approach each other; the movement very often being executed by the lamella which is not actually being stimulated. The lateral extent of these movements (concertina movements) is roughly proportional to the intensity of the stimulus. Such movements normally appear to transfer the bulk of the material on to the mantle. Separation of the main branchial nerve abolishes these movements.

(b) Each principal filament is capable of moving the ordinary filaments to which it is attached. This movement (flapping movement) is due to the movements of the interfilamentar junctions which alternatively move up and down at right angles to their length. This motion is independent of the branchial nerve and can be produced by direct stimulation of very tiny pieces of the individual filaments.

4. The significance of gill movements to feeding habits is discussed. The course of food particles depends on the nature of the stimuli affecting the gill.


5. The ctenidial axis and the principal filaments have a stratum of anastomosing nerve-cells which appear to form a true nerve-net comparable to that of the mantle.

6. The gill receives nerve-fibres from two sources, the brain and the visceral ganglion. The subsidiary branchial nerve is a structure hitherto unknown in the molluscan gill; so far its function is unknown. Each gill has four main longitudinal nerve-trunks.

7. The osphradium of the gill has a much more extensive distribution than has hitherto been supposed.

8. Two sets of muscles exist at the base of the gill-filaments, and these are responsible for movements of the lamellae. The muscle-fibres are non-striated.

9. The principal filaments are connected to the ordinary filaments by processes containing true muscle-cells, and by these cells movements of the filaments are effected.

This content is only available via PDF.