Cupressopathes abies ( Linnaeus, 1758 ),

Terrana, Lucas, Bo, Marzia, Opresko, Dennis M. & Eeckhaut, Igor, 2020, Shallow-water black corals (Cnidaria: Anthozoa: Hexacorallia: Antipatharia) from SW Madagascar, Zootaxa 4826 (1), pp. 1-62: 50-52

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Cupressopathes abies ( Linnaeus, 1758 )


Cupressopathes abies ( Linnaeus, 1758) 

Fig. 28View FIGURE 28

Gorgonia abies Linnaeus, 1758, p.1290  .

Antipathes cupressina Pallas, 1766, p.213  .

Antipathes cupressus Ellis & Solander, 1786, p.103  .

Antipathes abies Gray, 1857, p.292  .

Euantipathes abies van Pesch, 1914, p.39  –42, figs.12–14.

Cupressopathes abies Opresko 2001, p.352  -358, figs.8–10.

Material examined. Distal fragments from two colonies, Toliara 25 m specimens INV.131367 and INV.131357  .

Depth range. 15–52 m.

Description. Usually a monopodial colony with a bottlebrush shape, measuring up to 70 cm high ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, a, b); however, some colonies have up to five main branches, each one having a regular width of about 10 cm considering the axis and the pinnules ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, b). Each stem bears primary pinnules which are arranged pluriserially in about four rows that measure up to 5 cm in length ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, c). Between five and seven primary pinnules are found along one cm, counting those on all sides of the branch ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, c). Primary pinnules are inserted at nearly 90° on the stem and branches, then they extend horizontally and are naturally curved downward. Up to six orders of subpinnules are found on the primary ones ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, c, d). These subpinnules are always on the same side of the primary pinnules, most of the time they are biserial and distally inclined but uniserial ones can also be found ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, d). Subpinnules always grow upwards. Secondary pinnules measure up to 3 cm while tertiaries measure up to 2.5 cm. Higher orders of subpinnules are irregular and rarely measure more than 2.5 cm. The polyps are monoserial and are arranged on the same side of the ramification. Their colors are white or brown ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, a, b). Sometimes two rows of polyps can be seen, especially on thicker lateral branches. On the stem and thick branches, the polyps can be distributed all around the axis. Polyps measure 0.3–0.9 mm in transverse diameter. Their mutual distance goes from zero when they sit next to each other to 0.6 mm. There are 12 polyps per cm on the pinnules and subpinnules.

The morphology of the spines on the pinnules and subpinnules follow gradual changes with the diameter of the ramification, from sub-conical to acicular, sharp needle-like, as in other myriopathids ( Fig.28View FIGURE 28,e–l).Their surface is slightly papillose on two-thirds of their height with papillae elongated towards the tip of the spine. They are inclined upwards, and this is more distinct on the abpolypar spines ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, e–g). On thicker branches the inclination is not regular ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, h). On a subpinnule 0.11 mm in diameter, the spines are arranged in five longitudinal rows as seen from one aspect. The polypar spines measure 0.07–0.1 mm with a mutual distance of 0.16–0.24 mm and the abpolypar spines 0.06–0.09 mm with a mutual distance of 0.1–0.22 mm. On subpinnules of 0.35 mm, eight longitudinal rows can be seen. Both polypar and abpolypar spines reach 0.13 mm, with mutual distances of 0.11–0.21 mm and 0.11–0.24 mm, respectively. On a primary pinnule of 0.65 mm in diameter, the longitudinal arrangement is lost, and the spines are not consistently inclined upwards anymore but project out in various directions. Polypar spines measure 0.9– 0.17 mm and abpolypar spines 0.15 mm. On the main distal branch measuring 1 mm in diameter, the arrangement and inclination is irregular in the same way as on the primary pinnules. The spines measure up to 0.24 mm in height, they are tall and more densely arranged, sometimes bifid either from the base or only at the top ( Fig. 28View FIGURE 28, l).

Taxonomic remarks. This species was previously described in the western Pacific and the Indian Ocean. The present diagnosis closely matches the description of the neotype made by Opresko (2001) from the Philippines and collected at 40 m depth  .

Distribution. Philippines (neotype locality, Opresko 2001), Sri Lanka ( Thomson & Simpson 1905), Seychelles ( Cooper 1903), Mozambique ( Summers 1910), Indonesia ( van Pesch 1914), Madagascar (present study).














Cupressopathes abies ( Linnaeus, 1758 )

Terrana, Lucas, Bo, Marzia, Opresko, Dennis M. & Eeckhaut, Igor 2020

Cupressopathes abies

Opresko 2001: 352

Euantipathes abies

van Pesch 1914: 39

Antipathes abies

Gray 1857: 292

Antipathes cupressus

Ellis & Solander 1786: 103

Antipathes cupressina

Pallas 1766: 213

Gorgonia abies

Linnaeus 1758: 1290