BIOTIC Species Information for Pentapora fascialis
Researched byAngus Jackson Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byDr Peter J. Hayward
General Biology
Growth formFoliose
Feeding methodActive suspension feeder
Mobility/MovementPermanent attachment
Environmental positionEpibenthic
Typical food typesNo text entered HabitAttached
BioturbatorNot relevant FlexibilityNone (< 10 degrees)
FragilityFragile SizeMedium-large(21-50cm)
HeightUp to 10 cm Growth Rate2 cm/year
Adult dispersal potentialNone DependencyIndependent
General Biology Additional Information
  • Densities in the Bristol Channel have been recorded as up to one large colony per square metre. Populations in the Mediterranean have been recorded at densities of up to 7 colonies per square metre.
  • Pentapora fascialis grows initially as an encrusting sheet, which seems able to regenerate erect growths (P.J. Hayward pers. comm.).
  • Size ranges refer to colony diameter. Colony size is typically up to 20 cm in diameter and large specimens reach 40 cm across. The largest recorded specimen was from the Eddystone Light and had a circumference of over 2 metres and a depth of 30 cm (Hayward & Ryland, 1979). Specimens of Pentapora fascialis in the Mediterranean reach larger sizes (80cm diameter, 50 cm in height) in deeper waters (40-80 m).
  • Colony shape has been described as 'depressed globular' or 'dome-like' with an elliptical perimeter (Cocito et al., 1998(a)). Growth rates in the Bristol Channel have been estimated at around 2 cm (vertical height) per year through the use of stable oxygen isotope values (Patzold et al., 1987.). Another growth rate estimate (from the Mediterranean) indicates growth of over 200% colony surface area in 11 months (Cocito et al., 1998). Vertical growth has been recorded at up to 3.5 cm per year (Cocito & Ferdeghini, 1998 cited in Cocito et al., 1998).
  • The calcified laminae are rather brittle.
  • Pentapora fascialis characteristically supports several bryozoans including Amphiblestrum flemingii, Callopora dumerilii, Membranipora nitida & Smittoidea reticulata (Hayward& Ryland, 1979). Large colonies may shelter 1000's of other animals (Hayward & Ryland, 1979).
Biology References Hayward et al., 1996, Patzold et al., 1987, Cocito et al., 1998(a), Sala et al., 1996, Hayward & Ryland, 1979, Cocito et al., 1998(b),
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