Stelligera rigida (Montagu, 1818)

Stelligera rigida

Description: A branching erect to palm-like sponge with branches webbed together along their length. It may grow to a height of 5cm. The terminal branches are typically 5mm in diameter. The colour is pale yellow to orange and usually there is detritus adhering to the bristly surface.

Habitat: Usually found in sheltered locations with some current but also at exposed sites in deeper water.

Distribution: A fairly common and widely distributed species in the British Isles.

Similar Species: This species may be confused with Stelligera stuposa but in this species the branches are rarely fused, it is also taller than S. rigida reaching a height of 10cm (c.f. S. rigida which rarely exceeds 5cm). In form it may resemble Axinella damicornis, but the colour, robust bristles and sliminess of S. rigida are characteristic.

Key Identification Features:

Distribution Map: NBN map : National Biodiversity Network mapping facility, data for UK.

WoRMS: Species record : World Register of Marine Species.

iNaturalist: Species account : iNaturalist World Species Observations database

 Picton, B.E. & Morrow, C.C. (2016). Stelligera rigida (Montagu, 1818). [In] Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland.
https://www.habitas.org.uk/marinelife/species.asp?item=C4070 Accessed on 2024-05-22

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