Identifying Sponges

Key to California Porifera (Page 031)

( From page 030 B) Acanthostyles > 100 μm; Sponge encrusting; open coast.
[A]
Toxas (15 - 325 μm) with microspined ends.
cc031A.jpg
Clathria (Microciona) microjoanna (de Laubenfels, 1930)
Sponge: Encrusting to 2 cm. Consistency: Firm, Spongy. Surface: superficially pilose, with spicules. Oscula: 1.5 mm.
Color: Alive: Scarlet, salmon to salmon red. Preserved: drab.
Spicules: Megascleres: (1) Acanthostyles with heavily spined heads: 85 - 115 um. x 5.0 -10.0 um. (2) Styles-often with minutely spined heads: 275 - 330 um. x 20.0 - 27.0 um. (3) Subtylostyles-with microspined heads: 180 - 260 um. x 3.0 - 4.0 um. Microscleres: (1) Palmate Isochelae: 12 - 16 um. (2) Toxas-with microspined ends: 15 - 325 um.
Skeleton: Ascending plumose tracts of smooth styles with terminal tufts that penetrate surface. Subtylostyles mostly grouped at surface. Acanthostyles sparseley echinating tracts of styles.
Distribution: Southern to Northern California.
Depth: Intertidal to deep water.
Note: Was Microciona microjoanna.
[B]
Toxas (14-100 μm) with smooth ends.
Clathria (Microciona) parthena (de Laubenfels, 1930)
Sponge: Encrusting to 3-20 mm thick. Surface: superficially tuberculate.
Color: Alive: Red to orange-brown. Preserved: Drab.
Spicules: Megascleres: (1) Acanthostyles-fully spined: 85 - 170 um. x 5.0 - 8.0 um. (2) Styles: 30 - 475 um. (3)Subtylostyles-often with microspined heads: 150 - 300 um. Microscleres: (1) Palmate Isochelae: 20 - 30 um. (2)Toxas: 14 - 100 um.
Skeleton: Ascending plumose tracts of smooth Styles, which penetrate the surface. Subtylostyles mostly grouped at the surface. Acanthostyles sparsely echinating tracts.
Distribution: Southern to Northern California.
Depth: Intertidal to deep water, 45 m.
Note: Was Microciona parthena.
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