Sciaphilous communities from an overhang located at 78 m depth at Cap Negro (northern Tunisia) were collected by diving in 2014. Bryozoans are the most diverse group of epibionts on benthic organisms acting as substrata, i.e., the red coral Corallium rubrum and other skeletonised species such as the solitary scleractinian Caryophyllia calveri and the brachiopods Lacazella mediterranea and Joania cordata, these two latter so far unreported from Tunisia. In addition, some bryozoans sorted from a dredged coralligenous sample from the Cap Bon Peninsula at 38 m depth and conserved since 2006 were also studied. The preliminary inventory allowed the identification of 27 species. Most of these are rare; four species from Cap Negro (Microporella appendiculata, Prenantia cf. inerma, Plagioecia sarniensis, and Crassimarginatella mathildae) are new records for Tunisian waters. Savignyella lafonti and Schizomavella halimedae are newly reported from the Cap Bon Peninsula. The discovery of colonies belonging to Carbasea cf. carbasea from the same locality could bear on its long-time questioned occurrence in the Mediterranean. Further species are not yet included in the inventory because the material needs a deeper taxonomic study pending their recovery and examination from further samples collected in similar deep and/or dark habitats. Some new records are illustrated with scanning electron micrographs and discussed briefly when necessary. Although preliminary, the present results are significant additions to the bryozoans and brachiopods diversity of Tunisian remarkable habitats and point to the need for a greater focus on these still understudied ecosystems and their underestimated biodiversity.

Preliminary inventory of bryozoans from Coralligenous dark habitats of Cape Negro (Northern Tunisia).

ROSSO Antonietta
2022-01-01

Abstract

Sciaphilous communities from an overhang located at 78 m depth at Cap Negro (northern Tunisia) were collected by diving in 2014. Bryozoans are the most diverse group of epibionts on benthic organisms acting as substrata, i.e., the red coral Corallium rubrum and other skeletonised species such as the solitary scleractinian Caryophyllia calveri and the brachiopods Lacazella mediterranea and Joania cordata, these two latter so far unreported from Tunisia. In addition, some bryozoans sorted from a dredged coralligenous sample from the Cap Bon Peninsula at 38 m depth and conserved since 2006 were also studied. The preliminary inventory allowed the identification of 27 species. Most of these are rare; four species from Cap Negro (Microporella appendiculata, Prenantia cf. inerma, Plagioecia sarniensis, and Crassimarginatella mathildae) are new records for Tunisian waters. Savignyella lafonti and Schizomavella halimedae are newly reported from the Cap Bon Peninsula. The discovery of colonies belonging to Carbasea cf. carbasea from the same locality could bear on its long-time questioned occurrence in the Mediterranean. Further species are not yet included in the inventory because the material needs a deeper taxonomic study pending their recovery and examination from further samples collected in similar deep and/or dark habitats. Some new records are illustrated with scanning electron micrographs and discussed briefly when necessary. Although preliminary, the present results are significant additions to the bryozoans and brachiopods diversity of Tunisian remarkable habitats and point to the need for a greater focus on these still understudied ecosystems and their underestimated biodiversity.
benthos, epibiosis, diversity, new records, overhang
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/546224
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