BIOTIC Species Information for Ciona intestinalis
Researched byAngus Jackson Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byDr John Bishop
Distribution and Habitat
Distribution in Britain & IrelandWidely distributed round British and Irish coasts.
Global distributionWidely distributed throughout temperate regions of the world.
Biogeographic rangeNot researched Depth rangeLower shore to at least 500 m
MigratoryNon-migratory / Resident   
Distribution Additional InformationGrowths of the hydroid %Tubularia larynx% may greatly enhance the settlement and may be a causative factor for ascidian blooms (Schmidt, 1983). Ciona intestinalis is believed to have originated as a North Atlantic species but has spread widely through shipping to all temperate regions.

Substratum preferencesOther species (see additional information)
Artificial (e.g. metal/wood/concrete)
Large to very large boulders
Small boulders
Physiographic preferencesOpen coast
Offshore seabed
Strait / sound
Ria / Voe
Enclosed coast / Embayment
Biological zoneUpper Infralittoral
Lower Infralittoral
Upper Circalittoral
Lower Circalittoral
Wave exposureModerately Exposed
Very Sheltered
Extremely Sheltered
Ultra Sheltered
Tidal stream strength/Water flowModerately Strong (1-3 kn)
Weak (<1 kn)
Very Weak (negligible)
SalinityFull (30-40 psu)
Reduced (18-30 psu)
Variable (18-40 psu)
Habitat Preferences Additional Information
Distribution References Svane & Havenhand, 1993, Schmidt, 1983, Havenhand & Svane, 1991, Naranjo et al., 1996, Millar, 1970, Fox, 1994(a), Branch et al., 1994,
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