Scientia Marina, Vol 72, No 1 (2008)

The gastropod-symbiotic sea anemone genus Isosicyonis Carlgren, 1927 (Actiniaria: Actiniidae): a new species from the Weddell Sea (Antarctica) that clarifies the taxonomic position of the genus

Estefanía Rodríguez
Biodiversidad y Ecología de Invertebrados Marinos, Dpto. de Fisiología y Zoología, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain

Pablo José López-González
Biodiversidad y Ecología de Invertebrados Marinos, Dpto. de Fisiología y Zoología, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain


A second species of the sea anemone genus Isosicyonis is described and illustrated from 16 specimens collected in the Weddell Sea (Antarctica) on the Polarstern cruises ANT XVII/3, ANT XXI/2 and ANT XXIII/8. Isosicyonis striata n. sp. is easily distinguishable externally from the other species of the genus Isosicyonis alba by its pattern: white longitudinal stripes on the column, oral disc, and tentacles. It is also distinguished by internal features including the retractor muscles, parietobasilar muscles, marginal sphincter muscles, number of mesenteries, and cnidae. The genus Isosycionis is currently only known from the Southern Ocean. Both species of Isosicyonis live in association with a gastropod, with a single sea anemone occupying almost the whole shell of its gastropod host. The description of this new species, and our re-examination of Isosicyonis alba, resolves the controversial higher taxonomic position of the genus, confirming its placement within the Endomyaria.


sea anemone; Actiniaria; Actiniidae; Endomyaria; Mesomyaria; Antarctica

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