Halecium fruticosum Fraser, 1943a

Calder, Dale R. & Choong, Henry H. C., 2018, Names of hydroids (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa) established by Charles McLean Fraser (1872 - 1946), excluding those from Allan Hancock Expeditions, Zootaxa 4487 (1), pp. 1-83: 32-33

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Halecium fruticosum Fraser, 1943a


Halecium fruticosum Fraser, 1943a 

Halecium fruticosum Fraser, 1943a: 77  , pl. 16, figs. 4a, b.

Holotype. MCZ-IZ 9012: USA, North Carolina, Cape Fear, Cape Fear River, NNE 14 miles (23 km) off Bald Head Light , 9 fm (16 m), 1868-1869, one badly fragmented colony, in rather poor condition, without gonophores, coll. L.F. de Pourtalès, labelled “ type ”; formalin. 

Type locality. USA, North Carolina: Bald Head Lighthouse, NNE 14 miles (23 km) off Cape Fear ( Fraser 1943a). 

Current status. Valid, but see Remarks below.

Remarks. Fraser (1943a) described and illustrated Halecium fruticosum  , but provided no information as to its name-bearing type. The species was described in a collection sent to him for identification from the MCZ. A specimen at that museum (MCZ-IZ 9012), labelled “ type ”, is listed as a holotype in the MCZ online database. No other type material of the species was discovered during this study. In describing the species, Fraser reported that “…no complete colony [was] obtained…”, and no gonosomes were observed. On examination, the type of the species indeed comprises several fragments. However, all are considered parts of a single colony that we take to be the holotype by monotypy.

Although the holotype specimen is in rather poor condition, its trophosomal characters are still recognizable. The identity and affinities of the species will likely be apparent after more collecting is undertaken in the vicinity of the type locality, and after fertile specimens are discovered. Somewhat similar to Halecium fruticosum  is a hydroid from the Beaufort area of North Carolina, identified with question by Fraser (1912c) as H. bermudense Congdon, 1907  . His specimen was sterile, but an account was given of both female and male gonosomes from the original description of Congdon (1907). Calder & Hester (1978) also reported H. bermudense  from inshore waters of South Carolina, based largely on the account of Fraser (1912c). The occurrence of H. bermudense  on the coast of the Carolinas needs to be confirmed.

Included as a valid species in Cairns et al. (2002), Halecium fruticosum  is currently listed as a species inquirenda in WoRMS. To date, the only published record of the species is the original account by Fraser (1943a).


Museum of Comparative Zoology














Halecium fruticosum Fraser, 1943a

Calder, Dale R. & Choong, Henry H. C. 2018

Halecium fruticosum

Fraser, 1943a : 77