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Coral Borers of the Eastern Pacific: Aspidosiphon (A.) elegans (Sipuncula: Aspidosiphonidae) and Pomatogebia rugosa (Crustacea: Upogebiidae)

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Title:Coral Borers of the Eastern Pacific: Aspidosiphon (A.) elegans (Sipuncula: Aspidosiphonidae) and Pomatogebia rugosa (Crustacea: Upogebiidae)
Authors:Fonseca, Ana C.
Cortes, Jorge
Date Issued:Apr 1998
Publisher:University of Hawaii Press
Citation:Fonseca AC, Cortes J. 1998. Coral borers of the eastern Pacific: Aspidosiphon (A.) elegans (Sipuncula: Aspidosiphonidae) and Pomatogebia rugosa (Crustacea: Upogebiidae). Pac Sci 52(2): 170-175.
Abstract:This is the first report of the sipunculan Aspidosiphon (Aspidosiphon)
elegans (Chamisso & Eysenhardt, 1821) in the tropical eastern Pacific.
With this species the number of coral borers rises to 18 for this region. The
upogebiidid crustacean Pomatogebia rugosa (Lockington, 1878) was reported
previously (as Upogebia rugosa) from coral colonies in the Gulf of California,
Mexico, and from coral reefs of Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica; the latter represented
a southward range extension of approximately 3500 km. Subsequently, P. rugosa
was recorded from branches of Pocillopora corals in Colombia, extending
the range farther southward. In our study, both species were extracted from
colonies of the massive coral Porites lobata Dana from Golfo Dulce, southern
Pacific coast of Costa Rica. Aspidosiphon (A.) elegans ranged in length from 1
to 20 rom and was present in a density as high as 300 individuals per 1000 cm3.
Pomatogebia rugosa was present in 14% of the colonies examined and was responsible
for 0.6 ± 0.35% of the CaC03 removed at one site in Golfo Dulce; at
another site it was present in 33% of the colonies and was responsible for
2.5 ± 2.22% of the CaC03 removed. P. rugosa was found living in pairs inside
live coral colonies of Porites lobata, in branched tunnels about 2.5 mm in diameter
and lined with mud. Bioerosion caused by these two species of borers in
the eastern Pacific is minimal compared with that caused by sea urchins and
boring bivalves.
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 52, Number 2, 1998

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