TUNICATA : APLOUSOBRANCHIA : DidemnidaeSEA SQUIRTS

Diplosoma listerianum (Milne-Edwards, 1841)


Diplosoma listerianum

Description: This ascidian forms transparent gelatinous colonies on algae. The small zooids are scattered densely throughout the sheet. Each zooid has a small inhalant pore and there are a few larger exhalant openings, but these openings are not conspicuously pigmented. There is a pattern of small yellow pigment bodies in the surface layer which can be seen on close inspection. 4mm thick x 50mm wide sheets.

Habitat: A common ascidian in a wide variety of habitats in shallow water.

Distribution: Widespread around the British Isles.

Similar Species: Diplosoma spongiforme has been much mistaken for this species in the past. It forms much larger, more heavily pigmented, sheets on hard substrata. Diplosoma singulare forms similar smaller transparent colonies on seaweeds but has not been reported yet from the British Isles.

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=ZD970

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