Antho granditoxa Picton & Goodwin, 2007


Family : Microcionidae

Form: Forms thin patches with no excurrent channels visible and very inconspicuous osculae. Surface has hispid appearance and is sometimes lightly silted. Patches very variable in size, from 320 cm maximum diameter.

Colour: Bright orange/red.

Smell: none.

Consistency: Firm.

Surface: Slightly hispid with projecting spicules. Usually clean but with small amounts of silt or sand.

Apertures: There are no obvious oscules or excurrent channels.

Internal characters

Skeleton: Choanosome has ascending fibres of bundles of three or four smooth styles with a ladder-like reticulation of acanthostyles. Toxas of three sizes and chelae present in choanosome, small toxas very abundant. Splayed bundles of thin subtylostyles form the ectosome, these echinate the surface.

Spicules: Choanosomal smooth styles vary widely in size, 240850 by 614 μm. Choanosomal acanthostyles are 150180 by 1012 μm, entirely spined with small gritty spines, these are denser on the head. Ectosomal styles are 410500 by 23 μm, the head is very slightly tylote and microspined. Toxas are in two categories. The smaller ones are 30100 by 0.52 μm, very abundant in the choanosome. The second, larger category is much scarcer, these measure 210540 by 812 μm. Palmate isochelae measure 1618 μm.

Habitat: Found on the sides of stable boulders in moderate to strong tidal streams at depths of 30-40m.

Distribution: Currently only known from the south and east coasts of Rathlin Island, Northern Ireland.


Editors: Bernard Picton & Claire Goodwin.

 Picton, B.E., Morrow, C.C. & van Soest, R.W.B., 2011. [In] Sponges of Britain and Ireland