Thursday, 31 July 2014

A new species of Anthazoan Coral from the Abrolhos Archipelago and Royal Charlotte Bank, Brazil.

The Abrolhos Bank is an area of the Brazilian continental shelf to the south of Bahia State, noted for its large and rich coral reef fauna and unique geochemical nature, with high levels of siliclastic material (sand, quartz gravel etc.) being deposited in the area by the Brazil Current, which flows southward from the coast. The area includes the Abrolhos Archipelago, which is Brazil’s oldest marine reserve.

In a paper published in the journal Zootaxa on 4 July 2014, Sérgio Stampar of the Departamento de Ciências Biológicas at the Universidade Estadual Paulista and the Departamento de Zoologia at the Universidade de São Paulo, and André Morandini and Fábio Lang da Silveira, also of the Departamento de Zoologia at the Universidade de São Paulo, describe a new species of Anthazoan Coral from Abrolhos Archipelago and Royal Charlotte Bank on the Abrolhos Bank.

The new species is placed in the genus Pachycerianthus, and given the specific name schlenzae, in honour of Erika Schlenz formerly of the Departamento de Zoologia at the Universidade de São Paulo, and a well-known expert on Corals. Pachycerianthus schlenzae is a solitary Coral reaching about 15 cm in height, with 60-85 marginal tentacles reaching about 12 cm in length plus 60-80 labial tentacles, reaching about 4 cm. The tentacles are brown or purple with white spots.

Pachycerianthus schlenzae, live specimens. (A) From Guarapari in Espirito Santos State. (B) From Camamu Bay in Bahia State. Stampar et al. (2014).

See also…

Zoanthids are unusual Corals with similarities to both the reef-forming calcareous skeleton excreting Scleractinian Corals and the larger, free living Sea Anemones. Most species are colonial, with...

Scleractinian Corals first appeared in the fossil record in the Middle Triassic; they are distinct from, but  believed to be related to the Rugose and Tabulate Corals of the Palaeozoic. All modern Corals...

Corals on Australia's Great Barrier Reef, as in other parts of the world, are known to be in trouble, with declining Coral coverage, diebacks, bleaching events and replacement of Corals by Macroalgae (Seaweed) on much of the reef. Unfortunately, recording of Coral...

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  1. Its AnthOzoan. Not "Anthazoan"


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