Massinium bonapartum O’Loughlin

P. Mark O’Loughlin, Melanie Mackenzie & Didier Vandenspiegel, 2014, New dendrochirotid sea cucumbers from northern Australia (Echinodermata: Holothuroidea: Dendrochirotida), Memoirs of Museum Victoria 72, pp. 5-23: 12-13

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Massinium bonapartum O’Loughlin

sp. nov.

Massinium bonapartum O’Loughlin  sp. nov.

Zoobank LSID.


Figures 5 View Figure , 6 View Figure , key.

Material examined. Holotype. NW Australia, Joseph Bonaparte Gulf , Kimberley region, off King George River, 13.85°S 129.29°E, RV Solander, 45 m, J. Keesing, 6 Jun 2013, WAMAbout WAM Z27860 (KGR lot 23323; UF tissue lot MOLAF1457).GoogleMaps 

Paratype. Joseph Bonaparte Gulf , 11.54°S 129.83°E, RV Solander, 173 m, Geosciences Australia, 14 Sep 2009, NMVAbout NMV F202985 (1) (GA lot SOL4934 35BS24; UF tissue lot MOLAF1519).GoogleMaps 

Description. Form sub-spherical, slightly elongate, up to 43 mm long (preserved), mouth anterior dorsal, anus posterior dorsal, slightly developed oral and anal cones; firm leathery body wall; tube feet scattered over body, withdrawn, diameters about 0.2 mm, sparse dorsally, close cover ventrally and around mouth and anus; 20 dendritic tentacles, 5 pairs large in an outer ring, 5 pairs very small in an inner ring (proximal circumoral); calcareous ring long, tubular, composite; radial plates blunt anteriorly with 2 lateral shallow notches and deeper central notch, radial plates lacking median un-calcified section; inter-radial plates pointed anteriorly, large oval un-calcified posterior section closed distally by thin calcified link; 2 polian vesicles; short branched gonad tubules; respiratory trees extending the length of the coelom.

Ossicles in mid-body wall tables only, sparse dorsally, more numerous ventrally; table disc outlines irregularly round, typically 4 larger central and some small outer perforations, margin smooth or spinous, discs up to 112 µ m wide; spires with 2 frequently fused pillars, low or residual, few thick blunt apical spines. Oral disc with abundant tables with discs up to 112 µ m long, irregularly oval, many perforations, margins smooth; spires discrete, up to 70 µ m long, 2 partly fused pillars, rarely single, 1 to 3 median perforations, long apical spines typically widely splayed. Peri-anal body wall with abundant tables similar to those in the mid-body wall; some rods with distal perforations, rods up to 80 µ m long; small multi-layered anal scales about 200 µ m long. Tube feet with endplates, up to 320 µ m diameters, margin thick, lacking support ossicles; body wall type tables. Tentacles with abundant rods and rosette-like rod ossicles and some tables; rods up to 70 µ m long with ends widened with few perforations; rosette-like rods up to 88 µ m long with short rod widened distally with many small perforations created by dendritic branch fusing; few tables, similar to those in peri-oral disc.

Colour live off-white to pale yellow; colour preserved offwhite to pale brown, tube feet brown; tentacle dendritic branches black, trunks off-white to grey.

Distribution. NW Australia, Joseph Bonaparte Gulf, Kimberley region, off King George River, 45– 173 m.

Etymology. Named with reference to the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf from which the type specimens were collected.

Remarks. A distinctive character of Massinium bonapartum O’Loughlin  sp. nov. is the widely splayed long apical spines frequently present on the tables. We observed the five pairs of small tentacles to be in an inner ring. Massinium bonapartum  sp. nov. is distinguished from other species in the genus by the combination of morphological characters shown in the key.


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