Molgula citrina Alder & Hancock, 1848

Monniot, Françoise, 2018, Ascidians collected during the Madibenthos expedition in Martinique 3. Stolidobranchia, Pyuridae and Molgulidae, Zootaxa 4459 (3), pp. 401-430: 423-427

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Molgula citrina Alder & Hancock, 1848


Molgula citrina Alder & Hancock, 1848 

Fig. 24 View Figure

Monniot C.: 1969 and synonymy; Lambert et al 2010.

Station AB 181 (MNHN S3 MOL A 442; slide S3. 880).

The single specimen 7mm in diameter has a thin tunic covered with sand. The body wall is thin with a musculature reduced to the siphons and short bundles radiating from each siphon ( Fig. 24A View Figure ). There are 6 large oral tentacles with small ramifications of first order. The dorsal tubercle opens to the right in a C. The branchial sac has 7 folds on each side ( Fig. 24B View Figure ). The formula on the right side is: E- 4-5-7-7-8-5-3- DL. The infundibula are divided at the top of the folds. The gut forms a long open loop ( Fig. 24A View Figure ). The short stomach is covered by a dark brown hepatic gland. The anus has 2 lips. The kidney is ovoid ( Fig. 24A View Figure ). The gonads ( Fig. 24A View Figure ), one on each side, are made of a central ovary encircled and partly covered with numerous testis vesicles. The left gonad ( Fig. 24C View Figure ) lies in the secondary gut loop and the right gonad is applied against the dorsal side of the kidney ( Fig. 24A View Figure ). The oviduct is long and wide ( Fig. 24C View Figure ). The ducts of groups of testis vesicles join in the centre of the ovary surface to make tubes protruding into the atrial cavity, one in the right gonad and 2 on the left gonad ( Fig. 24C View Figure ) in the Martinique specimen. Specimens from Sweden and the Channel have been re-examined in comparison; the samples from Roscoff, of a smaller size than arctic specimens, are the same as those from Madibenthos and their identification as M. citrina  was ascertained by a genetic study (Shenkar & Swalla 2010).

M. citrina  is recorded for the first time in the tropical western Atlantic. This species is widely distributed in the north-eastern and north-western Atlantic Ocean and in Arctic regions ( Van Name 1945, Monniot 1970). It has been also recently found in the Pacific Ocean ( Lambert et al. 2010) and can be considered as an invasive ascidian in the Caribbean region..














Molgula citrina Alder & Hancock, 1848

Monniot, Françoise 2018


M. citrina

Alder & Hancock 1848