Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

 Colonies 10-30 cm across. Zooids soft, translucent, with a pale green tinge. The bases of each zooid are embedded in a common basal mass.
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Description

A large colonial ascidian, forming globular colonies. Smaller colonies are spherical, larger ones squat, with a small basal attachment. The test is transparent, with a greenish tinge when out of water. The zooids are large, with white markings similar to Clavelina lepadiformis. This marking consists of a white line along the endostyle, dorsal lamina and around the top of the branchial sac, and six small white spots around the atrial siphon. 50-400mm diameter colonies. Only Clavelina lepadiformis has similarly marked zooids, but that species does not have a massive common test, the zooids are only joined at their bases. Diazona is larger and the six small white spots around the atrial siphon are diagnostic.
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Distribution

West and south coasts of the British Isles, quite common in west Scotland, in offshore locations in W. Ireland and occurring as far south as Spain and the Mediterranean.
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Ecology

Habitat

Depth range based on 28 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 13 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 44.5
  Temperature range (°C): 10.625 - 11.851
  Nitrate (umol/L): 5.669 - 8.618
  Salinity (PPS): 35.229 - 35.352
  Oxygen (ml/l): 6.013 - 6.153
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.414 - 0.574
  Silicate (umol/l): 2.442 - 2.990

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 44.5

Temperature range (°C): 10.625 - 11.851

Nitrate (umol/L): 5.669 - 8.618

Salinity (PPS): 35.229 - 35.352

Oxygen (ml/l): 6.013 - 6.153

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.414 - 0.574

Silicate (umol/l): 2.442 - 2.990
 
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 Sublittoral attached to a variety of substrata, mostly adjacent to deeper waters.
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Typically a deep water form with a preference for clear offshore water, quite common in Scottish west coast waters inshore in the Oban/Mull area. Usually on rock ledges or stable boulders in current-swept areas. 20-200 m depth.
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General Ecology

Ecology

Diazona reproduces sexually during the summer and degenerates in August/September into a hard globular resting bud. Individual zooids divide in this bud to each produce 8 new zooids when growth begins again in January.
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