The third body region or trunk may attain a great length, one or two feet, or even more, and is also muscular, but the truncal muscles are of subordinate importance in locomotion, serving principally to promote the peristaltic contractions of the body by which the food is carried through the gut.
In correspondence with the tri-regional differentiation of the body in its external configuration, the coelom (body-cavity, perivisceral cavity) is divided into three portions completely separated from one another by septa: - (I) proboscis-coelom, or first body-cavity; (2) the collar-coelom, or second body-cavity; (3) truncal coelom, or third body-cavity.
There are reasons for supposing that the truncal coelom was at one time provided with pore-canals, but supposed vestiges of these structures have only been described for one genus, Spengelia,in which they lie near the anterior end of the truncal coelom.
Not only is the coelom thus subdivided, but the enteron (gut, alimentary canal, digestive tube) itself shows indications of three main subsections in continuity with one another: - (I) proboscis-gut (Eicheldarm, stomochord, vide infra); (2) collar-gut (buccal cavity, throat); (3) truncal gut extending from the collar to the vent.
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