Crumb-of-bread sponge (Hymeniacidon perlevis)
|Researched by||Elizabeth Barton||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||Hymeniacidon perlevis , Hymeniacidon perlevis (Montagu, 1814), Hymeniacidon perleve|
The growth form and colour of Hymeniacidon perlevis varies depending upon shore exposure, from thin sheets on lower to mid shore (growing along crevices and fault lines), to massive flanged or turreted forms often found on the lower shore in wave sheltered locations and in the sublittoral where conditions are distinctly silty. Colour varies from yellow to orange to blood-red. Shore forms tend to be blood-red, whilst sublittoral forms tend to be pinkish-red.
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandRecorded from Shetland, Orkney, a few scattered locations on the east coast, but more abundant on the south, south west and west coasts of Britain. It has also been recorded from the River Ilen estuary in southern Ireland.
HabitatUsually an intertidal species found colonizing a variety of surfaces from exposed rocks and seaweed holdfasts to muddy gravel. Also present on sublittoral rocks in turbid water or variable salinity conditions. It appears to prefer slightly silty environments.
- Grows as thin sheets, 'cushions' or massive flanged, but rarely branching.
- Grows up to 20 cm or more across.
- Thickness varies from a few mm (usually <0.03 cm) to 10 cm or more.
- Flanges and irregular projections may grow up to 3 cm or more.
- Yellow to orange to blood-red in colour.
- Surface smooth, even and minutely tuberculate in thin sheets, even but distinctly tuberculate in 'cushions' and uneven, irregularly folded with well developed tubercles in flanged forms.
- Smells sweetish, but vaguely distasteful.
- Oscules (openings) are scattered, level with surface or at the top of branching processes.
In the intertidal and shallow sublittoral more than one form can be detected, which may eventually be recognized as including more than one distinct species.
Hymeniacidon kitchingi is the only other Hymeniacidon species from Western Europe. It is more thinly encrusting than Hymeniacidon perlevis, and is beige-yellowish in colour. Close examination of the spicules of the endoskeleton may be required to distinguish other species.
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OBIS (Ocean Biodiversity Information System), 2023. Global map of species distribution using gridded data. Available from: Ocean Biogeographic Information System. www.iobis.org. Accessed: 2023-12-11
Outer Hebrides Biological Recording, 2018. Invertebrates (except insects), Outer Hebrides. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/hpavud accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.
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Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, 2018. Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Shoresearch. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/1nw3ch accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-02.
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Last Updated: 29/04/2008