Caryophyllia huinayensis, Cairns & Häussermann & Försterra, 2005

Cairns, Stephen D., Häussermann, Verena & Försterra, Günter, 2005, A review of the Scleractinia (Cnidaria: Anthozoa) of Chile, with the description of two new species, Zootaxa 1018 (1), pp. 15-46 : 24-27

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.1018.1.2

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scientific name

Caryophyllia huinayensis

sp. nov.

Caryophyllia huinayensis View in CoL , new species

Figs. 2A–C View FIGURE 2 , 3A–F View FIGURE 3 , 7 View FIGURE 7

Caryophyllia View in CoL clavus var. smithi . — Moseley, 1881: 134. — Cairns, 1982: 59, pl. 18, figs. 8–9, map 3. — Piñón, 1999: 20 (listed).

Caryophyllia spec. nov. Försterra and Häussermann, 2001: 55; 2003: 119, 121, 126–128 (13 sites from shallow water of southern Chilean fjords).

Material Examined/Types. — Holotype: Caleta Gonzalo , Reñihue Fjord, South Chile (42°32'46,6''S, 72°37'0,2''W), 30 m, 7 Feb 2001, ZSM 20050146 View Materials GoogleMaps . Paratypes: same locality, 1 specimen, ZSM 20050147 View Materials GoogleMaps ; same locality, 3 specimens, USNM 1021983 View Materials GoogleMaps ; same locality, 23 Feb 1997, 25– 35 m, one specimen GoogleMaps on Desmophyllum dianthus, ZSM 20020241; Lenca , Seno de Reloncaví, South Chile (41°38'20.4'S, 72°40'07.4"W), 27 m, 24–25 Jan 2001, 2 specimens, USNM 1021991 View Materials ; same locality, 27 m, 24–25 Jan 2001, 2 specimens, RMNH Coel. 33207; north shore of Quintupeu fjord (42°09'S; 72°25'W), 23–26 m, Sept 2003, 1 specimen GoogleMaps , IZUA­CNI­0056; Challenger 308 (50°08'30"S, 74°41'00"W), 256 m, 5 Jan 1876, 3 specimens, BM 1880.11 GoogleMaps .25.27.

Type Locality. — Caleta Gonzalo , Reñihue Fjord (42°32'46.6'S, 72°37'00.2"W), South Chile, 30 m.

Description. —Corallum ceratoid and attached, the largest specimen ( BM 1880.11.25.27) 8.7 x 7.6 mm in CD and 18.7 mm in height, the holotype slightly smaller: 7.9 x 7.5 mm in CD and 10.3 mm in height (broken pedicel). Calice circular to slightly elliptical, the GCD:LCD ranging from 1.02–1.15. Corallum attached by a robust pedicel ( PD: GCD = 0.39–0.47). Costae not prominent, the theca being smooth, sometimes porcellaneous, and covered with small, low granules. Theca also often encrusted with bryozoans and serpulids. Corallum uniformly white.

Septa hexamerally arranged in 4 cycles according to the formula: S1–2>S3>S4, although some coralla lack 2 or 4 septa resulting in 44 or 46 septa and 11 pali. Twentyfour septa and 6 pali are present at a CD of 2–3 mm, a full fourth cycle complete at a GCD of 5.5 mm. S1–2 only slightly exsert (0.8 mm), having straight to slightly sinuous axial edges that reach about three­quarters distance to columella. S3 equally exsert, about 70% width of the S1–2, having moderately sinuous axial edges. S4 slightly less exsert, about 80% width of the S3, having straight axial edges. Calicular margin not lancetted. Fossa of moderate depth, containing a circular to slightly elliptical crown of 12 broad pali (P3), each palus about 0.8 mm wide and having highly sinuous edges. Within the palar crown and slightly recessed is a field of 8–14 slender, twisted columellar elements constituting the fascicular columella.

Tissue color pinkish to red orange with the tentacles being more transparent than the tissue of the oral disc, very few specimens with whitish transparent tissue; color appearance may vary slightly due to endolithic algae. Spherulae distinctly pronounced, whitish to orange with color being more intense than in rest of tentacle. Most individuals with 48 tentacles.

Comparisons. —Among the approximately 46 species of attached Caryophyllia (many listed by Cairns 1991 and Cairns et al. 1999), C. huinayensis is morphologically most similar to C. cyathus ( Ellis & Solander, 1786) , both species having a compact, almost circular palar ring and columella. C. cyathus , however, is much larger, often having five full cycles of septa (96 septa and 24 pali) and is known only from the northeast Atlantic at 70– 700 m ( Zibrowius 1980).

Etymology. —This species is named after the Fundo Huinay in the fjord Comau where most of the examined specimens have been collected. The name is also related to the Huinay Foundation which runs the Huinay Scientific Field Station ( HSFS) from which most of the research on this species has been carried out.

Remarks. — Moseley (1881) was the first to report this species from Chile based on three specimens from Canal Aneho, but identified it as a northeast Atlantic species. Cairns (1982) examined and illustrated one of Moseley’s three specimens, concluding that they probably represented an undescribed species, but he did not describe it as new because of the paucity of specimens. Now, almost a quarter of a century later, the species is described based on the examination of 24 specimens from considerably shallow water than previously collected.

Habitat and Biology. —The species can generally be found in the Chilean fjords on and below overhanging portions of the substrate in depths greater than 20 m. During our diving surveys we found this species on primary (rock walls, boulder ground) and biogenic hard substratum (shells, other corals, brachiopods) and even on shells of living mollusks (such as the mytilid Aulacomya atra and the gastropod Crepidula sp. ), mainly at overhanging portions and at sites with moderate to strong current. We regularly found this species in the euphotic zone between 20 and 45 m depths in between and on specimens of the species Desmophyllum dianthus . Single specimens were found as shallow as 16 m, but always below the regular influence of the low salinity layer. Larger and most shallow accumulations of these corals were found in the fjords Comau (including Quintupeu and Lilihuapi Island) and the fjord Reñihue (S2–4). Highest densities were observed on the lower portion of large rock boulders which were lying on sand ground in the fjord Quintupeu. With an ROV, specimens of C. huinayensis could be observed in the fjord Comau down to depth of 200 m. In depth greater than 100 m specimens were regularly seen scattered over nearvertical rock walls. Shallow water habitat temperatures ranged from 8 to 13.5 °C and salinities from 28.5 to 34 l.

The position in the habitat might indicate sensitivity towards sedimentation stress. Several specimens were observed to have larvae or eggs in the tentacles ( Fig. 3C View FIGURE 3 ).

Associated species. — Caryophyllia huinayensis is mostly found on, between, or in close proximity to specimens of Desmophyllum dianthus and is a regular, although small, component of the shallow water coral banks in Chilean fjords. Caryophyllia huinayensis is slightly more abundant at the edges of these coral aggregations. On the overhanging portion of large boulders that were lying on sand ground in 25 m depth, specimens of C. huinayensis were significantly more abundant in the lower most part whereas D. dianthus dominated in the uppermost part of the overhanging portion. On the lower part of these boulders “mono­cultures” of C. huinayensis were observed to cover several square meters with densities of more than 4000 individuals/m 2. This may indicate that D. dianthus can dominate over C. huinayensis at well ventilated positions whereas C. huinayensis is more competitive at less ventilated positions. We regularly found light­exposed specimens with corallites stained by endolithic algae, which give them a pinkish or less frequently a greenish appearance. In the habitat, C. huinayensis was regularly associated with calcified and non­calcified crustose red algae (probably genus Lithothamnium or Lithophyllum), the serpulid polychaete Apomatus sp. , the sponges Geodia magellani , Mycale thielei and Iophon sp. , the bryozoa Cellaria malvinensis , and the gastropod Crepidula sp. Close to coral banks larger schools of the scorpaenid fish Sebastes capensis were observed. The corals might benefit from being cleaned from covering sediment through the sweeping effect of the movements of this rock cod.

Distribution. —Chilean fjords: Seno de Reloncaví: Punta Chaica/Lenca (S1); Fiordo Comau: numerous localities, including Isla Lilihuapi at the mouth of the fjord (S2); Fiordo Quintupeu (S3); Fiordo Reñihue: several localities (S4); Fjord Pitipalena (S6); Bahía Santo Domingo (S7) ( Fig. 7 View FIGURE 7 ); 16–256 m


National Museum of Natural History, Naturalis


Bristol Museum


Dutch Plant Protection Service, Culture Collection of Plant Pathogenic Bacteria














Caryophyllia huinayensis

Cairns, Stephen D., Häussermann, Verena & Försterra, Günter 2005

Caryophyllia spec.

Forsterra, G. & Haussermann, V. 2003: 119
Forsterra, G. & Haussermann, V. 2001: 55


Pinon, G. C. 1999: 20
Cairns, S. D. 1982: 59
Moseley, H. N. 1881: 134
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