Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

 Rather large, up to 24 × 15 mm (DBUA 667). Overall colour is variable (black, blue, olive, orange, cream). Valves typically olive-green with reddish blotches; the wide jugal area is usually lighter (cream or beige) with dark longitudinal streaks. Visible portion of the valves is trapezoidal, little or no beak. The central area with faint longitudinal grooves; lateral areas covered with closely-spaced, small round granules in quincunx and forming radiating rows. Girdle broad and densely covered with short spicules, with 18 large tufts of spines arranged around the head and at the sutures. One specimen from the Azores had a girdle that appeared cyan blue in life. There is a distinct marginal fringe of small tapered spicules.
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© Sérgio P. Ávila, Julia Sigwart

Source: ZooKeys

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Description

 Acanthochitona fascicularis has a relatively flat, extended oval shape with a shell length of up to 6 cm. Its width is half that of its length. The colour may be variable; being marbled with off white, grey, yellowish or brown. This species has a broad and spiny girdle with 18 dense tufts of long bristles (up to 1.5 mm long), 4 of which are in an arc around the head valve. The surface is covered with recumbent spines, making it feel velvety to the touch. The girdle is fringed with spines, up to 1 mm in length. Valves on the shell are strongly arched and, when viewed under a hand-lens, appear coarsely granular due to densely packed and evenly arranged dorsal papillae.This species is larger than Acanthochitona crinita but the two are very similar and therefore easily confused. Acanthochitona fascicularis has finer shell valves with more regular granulation. Acanthochitona fascicularis is a grazer, feeding on encrusting or filamentous algae and possibly bryozoans.
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Distribution

 Found in the North Atlantic from Ireland and Britain, south to Portuguese shores (Nobre 1931), Azores, Madeira, Selvagens (Albuquerque et al. 2009), Canary Islands and throughout the Mediterranean Sea (Kaas 1985, 1991). From the intertidal zone down to 50 m depth (Van Belle 1984). 
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© Sérgio P. Ávila, Julia Sigwart

Source: ZooKeys

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Ecology

Habitat

Depth range based on 18 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 5 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 40
  Temperature range (°C): 16.315 - 17.140
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.211 - 0.326
  Salinity (PPS): 37.926 - 38.201
  Oxygen (ml/l): 5.513 - 5.541
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.096 - 0.131
  Silicate (umol/l): 1.247 - 1.379

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 40

Temperature range (°C): 16.315 - 17.140

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.211 - 0.326

Salinity (PPS): 37.926 - 38.201

Oxygen (ml/l): 5.513 - 5.541

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.096 - 0.131

Silicate (umol/l): 1.247 - 1.379
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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 This chiton is found on the lower shore to 50 m depth, on rocks, boulders or in crevices.
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Wikipedia

Acanthochitona fascicularis

Acanthochitona fascicularis is a common chiton in the family Acanthochitonidae.

Distribution and habitat[edit source | edit]

This chiton has been recorded in European waters, the Mediterranean Sea, the Red Sea and the Pacific Ocean. It is usually found on the lower shore and the sublittoral zone to a depth of 50 m on hard surfaces, such as on or under rocks, boulders or in rock crevices

Description[edit source | edit]

The shell of Acanthochitona fascicularis has an elongate, flat oval shape and is about twice as long as broad. It has a length of up to 60 mm. The color may be variable; being marbled with off-white, gray, yellowish or brown. The eight transverse valves of the shell are strongly arched with a rounded keel and prominent beaks. The keel shows longitudinal ridges and appears coarsely granular due to densely packed, oval or rounded and evenly arranged dorsal papillae. The girdle contains 18 tufts of bristles (maximum length : 1.5 mm), one on each side at the back of the plates. Four of these bristles are arranged around the cephalic plate. The sculpture of the valves consists of a cover with densely packed, backward-pointing spines that are regularly distributed and give a velvety feel when touched. The girdle is fringed with a dense series of longer spines (up to 1 mm).[1]

This species can be confounded with Acanthochitona crinita, but this last one is smaller (about 30 mm) and the granules on the dorsal plates are large, flat topped and pyriform and unevenly spaced.

Feeding habits[edit source | edit]

This chiton is a grazer that feeds on encrusting or filamentous algae and possibly bryozoans.

References[edit source | edit]

  1. ^ P.J. Hayward, and J.S. Ryland (1996). Handbook of the Marine Fauna of North-West Europe. Oxford University Press. p. 485. ISBN 0-19-854055-8. 
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