Distaplia rosea della Valle, 1881

Distaplia rosea

Description: Colonies are dome-shaped masses attached to small stones, shells, etc. They are of a characteristic rose-pink colour and sticky consistency. The zooids are completely embedded in test substance and the colony resembles a polyclinid. 20-50mm in diameter x l0mm thick.

Habitat: Typically found in sheltered muddy areas where there are shells or stones lying on the surface on which the colonies can grow. Found from 10m to at least 100m depth. Also frequent on wrecks.

Ecology: The tadpole larva is highly differentiated on release from the colony and swims freely for only a short period before settling. This could account for the localised distribution of this species, and the fact that it is often common when a locality is discovered.

Distribution: Probably occurs all round the British Isles, currently known from the southern North Sea (Norfolk), the English Channel, south-west Britain, the Irish Sea and south-west Scotland. Also from the west Coast of France and the Mediterranean.

Similar Species: The dome-shaped colonies resemble a polyclinid but the rose-pink colour and sticky consistency are quite characteristic. Internally the structure of the zooid with separate thorax and abdomen but no post-abdomen is distinctive.

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). Distaplia rosea della Valle, 1881. [In] Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland.
https://www.habitas.org.uk/marinelife/species.asp?item=ZD170 Accessed on 2024-06-21

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