TUNICATA : PHLEBOBRANCHIA : AscidiidaeSEA SQUIRTS

Ascidia mentula O F Müller, 1776


Description: The body is oval and attached on one side to the substratum. The test is thick and cartilaginous, usually pink in colour,in reasonably well-lit places, grey in silty areas or deeper water. The oral siphon is wide but short, with eight small pointed white lobes around it. The atrial siphon is halfway along the body. 50-100mm long.

Habitat: Commonly found on vertical or overhanging surfaces, wrecks and rock faces. Many individuals are usually found together in suitable habitats.

Ecology: A long-lived species which produces small eggs.

Distribution: Generally distributed around the British Isles and elsewhere from Norway to the Mediterranean.

Similar Species: Ascidia conchilega is similar but green in colour and lives beneath rocks, shells, etc.

Key Identification Features:

Distribution Map from BioMar data for Ireland - Google Earth map:  download this placemark (not got Google Earth installed?)

Distribution Map from NBN: Grid map (fast) : Interactive map (slow, requires login to view records) : National Biodiversity Network mapping facility, data for UK.


 Picton, B.E. & Morrow, C.C., 2010. [In] Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland
http://www.habitas.org.uk/marinelife/species.asp?item=ZD1500

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