Edwardsia juliae , Daly, Marymegan & Ljubenkov, John C., 2008

Daly, Marymegan & Ljubenkov, John C., 2008, Edwardsiid sea anemones of California (Cnidaria: Actiniaria: Edwardsiidae), with descriptions of eight new species, Zootaxa 1860, pp. 1-27: 9-10

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Edwardsia juliae

sp. nov.

Edwardsia juliae  sp. nov.

Figs. 1View FIGURE 1, 5View FIGURE 5; Table 1

Diagnosis. With 12 tentacles and well spaced nemathybomes forming longitudinal rows between each pair of mesenteries. Length of whole animal in contraction 5–10 mm; diameter to 2 mm.

Material examined. Holotype: CASAbout CAS 175212, San Diego, California, Bight 0 3 Sta. 4278, 33° 52.6818 ’N 118 ° 32.7 ’W, 22 ­Jul­2003, 64 m. Paratypes: CASAbout CAS 175199, collected with holotype (2 specimens); CASAbout CAS 175200, Monterey Bay, California, 37 ° 1.65024 ’N 122 ° 16.05045 ’W, 19 ­Aug­1999, 50 m; CASAbout CAS 175203, San Diego, California, 32.49305 °N 117 ° 9.7728 ’W, 23 ­Jul­ 1997, 26.2 m (> 10 specimens); CASAbout CAS 175206, Long Beach, California, 21 ­Jul­1995, 24 m (2 specimens).

External anatomy. Tentacles short, blunt in contraction, in single cycle of 12 ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 A). Preserved specimens variable in shape from stout to vermiform ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 B, D). Scapus with small nemathybomes in single longitudinal rows between macrocnemes ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 B, E). Periderm thin, sandy, deciduous; scapus beige to grey. Physa slightly rounded or blunt cone, often with sandy film; may be retracted inside scapus ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 B, D, F).

Internal anatomy and histology. Parietal and retractor muscles relatively small, weak ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 C, H). Retractor muscle pennon with single branch ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 C). Branches of retractor widely spaced, typically unramified and variable in height: taller branches on ends, shorter branches in middle ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 C). Parietal muscle trianguloid; central lamella and unramified lateral branches of approximately equal thickness ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 H). Gonochoric; all examined specimens either male or female.

Nemathybomes small, single, slightly protrusive ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 B, C, E). Epidermis and mesoglea of scapus thickest at nemathybomes, relatively thin elsewhere, becoming thick, glandular on physa ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 F, G).

Cnidom. Spirocysts, basitrichs, microbasic p ­mastigophores ( Figs. 5View FIGURE 5 I– O; see Table 1 for size and distribution).

Etymology. Named for Julie Schneider Ljubenkov, accomplished artist and natural historian of the botanical and marine environment of the Luiseños (Native Americans) in southern California and illustrator of the whole animals for this paper.

Distribution and habitat. Co­occurs with E. olguini  on continental shelf of southern California between 10 and 100 m; both may be collected in a single core. Northern range extends into southern Washington (JL, pers. obs.); specimens from northern waters typically larger. In all regions, E. juliae  more abundant in sandy than muddy sediments.

Similar species. Only three species of Edwardsia  with 12 tentacles have previously been described: E. andresi Danielssen, 1890  , E. fusca Danielssen, 1890  , and E. jonesi Seshaiya & Cutress, 1969  . All of these differ in habitat from E. juliae  : the first two are from deeper water of the North Atlantic ( E. andresi  : 150–450 m, E. fusca  : 270 m; see Fautin 2007); the third is estuarine. Both E. andresi  and E. fusca  have nemathybomes scattered on the scapus, whereas E. jonesi  and E. juliae  have nemathybomes in rows. The nemathybome nematocysts differ: at 42.3–52.7 μm, the basitrichs of E. juliae  are smaller than those of E. andresi  (48–67 μm: Carlgren 1921) and E. jonesi  (48–72 μm: Seshaiya & Cutress 1969) and larger than those of E. fusca  (31–36 μm: Carlgren 1921).

Remarks. Based on per­sample abundance and frequency of occurrence, this is the most abundant edwardsiid in offshore waters in southern and central California. Although many cores contain a single specimen, small aggregations of 30–40 anemones may be collected in a core (= 300–400 /m 2); occasionally up to 250 (= 2500 /m 2) have been collected in cores at 80 m off both Monterey and Los Angeles.


California Academy of Sciences