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Species Name:   

Tubulanus rhabdotus   

Common Name:

                   None

 

I.  TAXONOMY

Kingdom Phylum/Division: Class: Order: Family: Genus:
Animalia Nemertea Anopla Palaeonemertea Tubulanidae Tubulanus

 
Tubulanus rhabdotus: Typical adult size
is 15 cm.  Photo courtesy of: Newman & Flowers, Smithsonian Institution (NMNH) 

Species Name: 
Tubulanus rhabdotus

Common Name:
None

Species Description:
Tubulanus rhabdotus is an unarmed Nemertean worm that is tube dwelling.  This animal secretes a cellophane-like tube which it attaches it to various substrata, most commonly among sessile, aggregated organisms such as ascidians and oysters.  The head and body have dark transverse bands that give this worm a segmented appearance.  T. rhabdotus grows to approximately 15 cm.


II.  HABITAT AND DISTRIBUTION 

IRL Distribution:
Probably occurs lagoon-wide, however, T. rhabdotus has been recorded primarily around Jim Island, near Fort Pierce, Florida.  This is likely an effect of sampling effort.


III. LIFE HISTORY AND POPULATION BIOLOGY

Age, Size, Lifespan:
Adults typically grow to 15 cm, approximately 4 inches.

Abundance:
Adult Tubulanus rhabdotus are considered common in the Indian River Lagoon.

Locomotion:
Dispersal of larval Tubulanus rhabdotus is accomplished by floating/ciliation. Mobility of adults and juveniles of this species occurs by creeping.

Reproduction:
Tubulanus rhabdotus is gonochoristic with external outcross fertilization.


IV.  PHYSICAL TOLERANCES

Temperature:
Tubulanus rhabdotus is eurythermal.  

Salinity:
Tubulanus rhabdotus is euryhaline.  


V.  COMMUNITY ECOLOGY

Trophic Mode:
The trophic status of larval Tubulanus rhabdotus is not known, but juveniles and adults of this species are omnivorous, probably preferring annelids.

Habitat:

Tubulanus rhabdotus is found subtidally to the low intertidal, protected from wave exposure. Juvenile and adult Tubulanus rhabdotus occur on oyster reefs and pilings of marinas and docks. Preferred substrata of Tubulanus rhabdotus include cobble, wood piers, oyster and shell.


VI. SPECIAL STATUS

Special Status:
None.

Economic Importance:
None.

 

Report by:  J. Dineen, Smithsonian Marine Station
with thanks to L. Newman
Submit additional information, photos or comments to:
irl_webmaster@si.edu
Page last updated: July 25,  2001