Distribution and abundance of the ascidian Ecteinascidia turbinata (Ascidiacea : Perophoridae) in Cuba.

  • Hernandez-Zanuy A
  • Carballo J
  • Garcia-Cagide A
 et al. 
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Permanently submerged mangrove roots (Rhizophora mangle) are the main
habitat of the ascidian Ecteinascidia turbinata in Cuba. It was
occasionally found on black coral (Antiphates caribeana) between 22 and
38 meters deep. This species exhibits a wide distribution in all the
mangrove keys surrounding the Island of Cuba but does not occur in
riparian or fringing mangroves. Populations of this species are abundant
in Cuba: in 75 % of the 58 localities sampled the species was present
and in 57 % more than 50 % of the roots held at least one colony. The
highest colony densities were found in the northern coast of Pinar del
Rio province with values near one colony per lineal meter of mangrove
root. We found the highest density (1.46 col/m) and greatest biomass at
Jutias Key, with values between 25 and 660 g/m. The average of wet
biomass in the studied mangroves was 73.63 g/m.

Author-supplied keywords

  • ascidian; Ecteinascidia turbinala; distribution; a

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  • Aida Hernandez-Zanuy

  • Jose Luis Carballo

  • Alida Garcia-Cagide

  • Santiago Naranjo

  • Macario Esquivel

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