Tethya annona, Sim-Smith & Hickman & Kelly, 2021

Sim-Smith, Carina, Hickman, Cleveland & Kelly, Michelle, 2021, New shallow-water sponges (Porifera) from the Galápagos Islands, Zootaxa 5012 (1), pp. 1-71 : 55

publication ID


publication LSID


persistent identifier


treatment provided by


scientific name

Tethya annona

sp. nov.

Tethya annona sp. nov.

( Fig. 26 View FIGURE 26 , Table 10)

Material examined. Holotype —MCCDRS9479, Punta Vicente Roca , Isabela Island, 0.0489° S, 91.558° W, depth unknown, 15 Nov 2003 GoogleMaps . Paratype —MCCDRS9478, Punta Vicente Roca , Isabela Island, 0.0489° S, 91.558° W, 11 m, 16 Jan 2003 GoogleMaps .

Type locality. Isabela Island .

Habitat and distribution. Only found from type locality. Found growing on rock; 11 m.

Description. Globose sponge, 20 mm in diameter, covered in flattened, rounded tubercles that are around 1 mm high. No oscules are visible. Colour in life is pale peach yellow, colour in ethanol is tan ( Fig. 26A–B View FIGURE 26 ). Texture is firm.

Section. Cortex is well-developed, densely packed with tylasters and spherasters. Bundles of strongyloxeas radiate out from the centre of the sponge, spreading out into terminal fans at the surface ( Fig. 26C View FIGURE 26 ). A palisade of smaller auxillary strongyloxeas is present in the periphery of the choanosome, aligned perpendicular to the surface ( Fig. 26D View FIGURE 26 ). Spherasters and tylasters are scattered throughout choanosome.

Spicules. Megascleres —Strongyloxeas, 878 (332–1402) × 15 (6–33) µm (n=80), no clear size separation between auxiliary strongyloxeas and main strongyloxeas ( Fig. 26E View FIGURE 26 ; Table 10). Microscleres (megasters) —Spherasters, 52 (15–106) µm in diameter (n=80); ray:centrum ratio is 0.96 ( Fig. 26F View FIGURE 26 ). Microscleres (micrasters) —Tylasters with spined tips, 10 (6–15) µm in diameter (n = 40) ( Fig. 26G View FIGURE 26 ; Table 10).

Etymology. Named for the shape and surface of this sponge, which resembles a custard apple, the fruit of Annona squamosa (Latin nominative singular in apposition).

Remarks. This species is very similar in appearance and spicule complement to T. sorbetus sp. nov. The main differences are that T. annona sp. nov.: lacks apical oscules; lacks the surface crust of tylasters; has only one size class of spherasters; and, has, on average, longer strongyloxeas than T. sorbetus sp. nov. Tethya annona sp. nov. differs from all other eastern Pacific species as per T. sorbetus sp. nov.

Order Suberitida Chombard & Boury-Esnault