Styela gibbsii (Stimpson, 1864)
Common name(s): Brown tunicate, peanut sea squirt, sea peanut
|Synonyms: Cynthia gibbsii|
|Styela gibbsi, about 3 cm tall, found subtidally near Rosario|
|(Photo by: Dave Cowles, August 2009)|
How to Distinguish from Similar Species: Styela montereyensis and S. clava have a much more elongated basal stalk. S. plicata is similar in form to S. gibbsi but has large lumps rather than longitudinal wrinkles. S. truncata is up to 3 cm tall and has a yellowish to reddish brown tunic which is smooth unless the animal is contracted. P haustor has lumps as well as wrinkles, red siphon tips, and is often covered with debris.
Geographical Range: Alaska to California
Depth Range: Rare intertidally. Common subtidally
Habitat: Pilings, rocky substrates, stones, or shells, especially often attached to Trichotropis cancellata shells. May aggregate together or be mixed with tunicates of other species.
Biology/Natural History: This species does not brood its larvae.
May be parasitized by the parasitic barnacle
Peltogaster sp or by the parasitic copepods Scolecimorpha
huntsmanni and Enterocola
laticeps. The commensal pea crabs Fabia
subquadrata or Pinnixa
faba may live in the atrial cavity.
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Johnson and Snook, 1955
Lamb and Hanby, 2005
MacGinitie and MacGinitie, 1949
General Notes and Observations: Locations,
abundances, unusual behaviors: