BIOTIC Species Information for Halichondria bowerbanki
Researched byDr Keith Hiscock and Hugh Jones Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byDr Rob van Soest
General Biology
Growth formCrustose soft
Feeding methodActive suspension feeder
Mobility/MovementPermanent attachment
Environmental positionEpifaunal
Typical food typesFine suspended organic matter. HabitAttached
BioturbatorNot relevant FlexibilityHigh (>45 degrees)
FragilityFragile SizeMedium-large(21-50cm)
HeightUp to 12 cm Growth RateMean 1.1 mm/day in summer. None in winter.
Adult dispersal potentialNot relevant DependencyCommensal with/on/in
General Biology Additional Information
  • Under optimal conditions (and with a low sample number), Vethaak et al. (1982) recorded a mean length increase of 1.1 mm / day in summer and no growth in winter.
  • Vethaak et al. (1982) identified five distinct growth forms (plus intermediate forms) including incrusting, bushlike and massive forms. They reported a maximum colony size of 25 cm width to 12 cm high although most colonies are rarely this big.
  • In some sheltered locations the branches grow over other species and loop like bramble stolons attaching to any suitable object they encounter.
  • Found to house a large community of associated amphipod species which show seasonal variation (Biernbaum, 1981).
  • The green filamentous algae Microspora ficulinae lives in association with the tissues of Halichondria bowerbanki.
Biology References Soest van et al., 2000, Moss & Ackers, 1982, Farnham et al., 1985, Biernbaum, 1981, Barthel & Wolfrath, 1989, Barthel, 1988,
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