Identifying Sponges

Key to California Porifera (Page 010)

( From page 009 A) Megascleres include Acanthostyles.
Styles to Tylostyles, straight., Acanthostyles; acanthose on head and shaft, NOT on point. Megascleres Styles to Tylostyles. Tylostrongyles to Subtylostrongyles and Acanthostyles to Acanthosubtylostyles with intermediates.
Phorbas californiana (de Laubenfels, 1932)
Sponge: Thickly encrusting, amorphous. Consistency: fragile. Surface: smooth with small, tubercles and a few smooth ridges. Oscula: 0.5 to 0.75 mm. flush.
Color: Alive: Drab.
Spicules: Megascleres: (1) Style - Tylostyles: 162 -224-255-289 um. x 2 -4-6-7 um. (2) Tylostrongyles: 222 -247-265- 294 um. x 3 -5-7-10 um. (3) Acanthostyles: 166 -238-260- 311 um. x 3 -6- 7 um. Note:: The three basic spicule types often highly modified; difficult to distinguish between one type and another.
Skeleton: Ectosome: Fleshy dermal membrane with mostly tangential Tylostrongyles and Acanthostyles. Choanosome; With isolated tracts and scattered spicules.
Distribution: Southern California
Depth: Intertidal to subtidal
Note: Was formerly Myxilla versicolor californiana and needs to be compared to Phorbas hoffmani.
Styles, straight and bent. Acanthostyles, bent; acanthose on point. Megascleres Styles and Acanthostyles.
Endectyon (Hemectyon) sp. (Green & Bakus, 1994)
Sponge: Branching projections 1-2 mm tall from encrusting base; no stalk. Surface: Surface finely hispid. Crusty, prickly.
Color: ? Alive, white.
Spicules: Megascleres: (1)Styles: 280 -558- 730 um. x 16 -25- 31 um. straight and with head end bent. (2)Acanthostyles: 230 -305- 460 um. x 18 -22- 26 um. -acanthose on pointed end.
Skeleton: Plumose with axial core of Styles and echinating Acanthostyles.
Distribution: Southern California, Santa Maria Basin.
Depth: Deep water, 90 to 130.5 m.
Note: Related species all have stylote or oxeote Rhaphides. These are microscleres only by relative size. See dichotomy 2B for other related species or page 33. Was originally Hemectyon sp.
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