Home  |   Fishes   |   Invertebrates   |  Books   |   CDs   |   Links   |   Contact
 photos copyright John P. Hoover unless otherwise credited

Ctenophores not in Hawaii's Sea Creatures
Here's an (unofficial?) Bishop Museum list of Hawaiian ctenophores

photos: Mark Vermeij

URCHIN CTENOPHORE Coeloplana bannwarthii

"I wondered whether you could help me out regarding some worms that I observed on Diadema during a night dive last week. These feather-like creatures (see attached pictures) hang from small, red thickenings in the urchin's spines that were otherwise black. The number of these organisms varied between 1-30 per urchin and while the larger ones induced these red bumps, smaller ones were coming from a small hole in the urchin's spine. All these featherlike creatures were flapping around in the current and retracted once they caught some particle that floated by. I estimate that ~80% of the urchins (Diadema only) at this site (Kahekili/ Maui) carried these additions around.
I wondered if you might know this organism by name and/ or reputation and would be willing to guide me on what to think of this."

Best regards

Mark Vermeij


Hi Mark,

Those are ctenophores - most species drift in the water like jellyfish (popularly known as comb jellies), but are a few live on the bottom or attach to other animals. It's probably Coeloplana bannwarthii Krumbach, 1933, which according to Reef and Shore Fauna of Hawaii Section 1 [Bishop Museum Special Publication 64(1)], p. 267, is symbiotic with urchins of the genus Echinothrix and Diadema in Hawaii.


CTENOPHORE - Velamen sp.

Palea Point, O`ahu. 4-3-97

  Home  |   Fishes   |   Invertebrates   |  Books   |   CDs   |   Links   |   Contact
  Text and photos copyright John P. Hoover unless otherwise credited