|Researched by||Edward Mayhew||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||Amphilectus fucorum , Esperiopsis fucorum , Amphilectus fucorum (Esper, 1794)|
An intense reddish orange encrusting soft sponge, which becomes colourless in alcohol. The body shape is highly variable amongst individuals (extremely polymorphic) and individuals are fast growing, changing shape within a few weeks. It can form thin sheets, cushions, or massive, lobose or branched structures. The sponge can also occur in hollow 'amphora' shaped forms in sheltered conditions.
Recorded from the Shetland Isles, Orkney, Fraserburgh, the Firth of Forth, Northumberland and east Yorkshire, the southeast, south and southwest coasts of England, the west coasts of England and Scotland, and all coasts of Ireland.
Recorded on the Atlantic coasts of Europe from Norway and the Faeroe Islands to the Mediterranean.
It occurs in the shallow sublittoral zone, often overgrowing the holdfasts of Laminaria sp. or sessile invertebrates. It can tolerate a wide range of exposures and can also be found in areas experiencing strong tidal currents. Occasionally found in cryptic low-littoral habitats.
The pigment can be squeezed out between the fingers. The sponge is thought to go colourless in deeper water. It has also been found growing up hydroid stems.
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Hayward, P.J. & Ryland, J.S. (ed.) 1995b. Handbook of the marine fauna of North-West Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hooper, J.N.A. & Van Soest, R.W.M., 2002. Systema Porifera: A guide to the classification of sponges. Volume 1 & 2. New York: Kluwer Academic/ Plenum Publishers.
Howson, C.M. & Picton, B.E., 1997. The species directory of the marine fauna and flora of the British Isles and surrounding seas. Belfast: Ulster Museum. [Ulster Museum publication, no. 276.]
JNCC (Joint Nature Conservation Committee), 1999. Marine Environment Resource Mapping And Information Database (MERMAID): Marine Nature Conservation Review Survey Database. [on-line] http://www.jncc.gov.uk/mermaid
Moss, D., & Ackers, G. (eds.), 1982. The UCS Sponge Guide. Produced by R. Earll. Ross-on-Wye: The Underwater Conservation Society.
National Biodiversity Network (NBN) Atlas website. Available from: http://www.nbnatlas.org. Accessed 01 April 2017
Stachowitsch, M., 1992. The invertebrates: an illustrated glossary. USA: Wiley-Liss.
Van Soest, R.W.M., Picton, B. & Morrow, C., 2000. Sponges of the North East Atlantic. [CD-ROM] Windows version 1.0. Amsterdam: Biodiversity Center of ETI, Multimedia Interactive Software. [World Biodiversity Database CD-ROM Series.]
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Last Updated: 29/07/2004