The South Atlantic Bight
Octocoral Morphology

Gorgonacean Bauplan

List of Species

published version (DeVictor & Morton, Zootaxa 2599)
see this for keys

Occurrence Table

Notes on the Species
Carijoa riisei
Scleranthelia rugosa
Telesto fruticulosa
Telesto nelleae
Telesto sanguinea
Bellonella rubistella
Pseudodrifa nigra
Nidalia occidentalis
Iciligorgia schrammi
Diodogorgia nodulifera
Titanideum frauenfeldii
Muricea pendula
Thesea nivea
Bebryce cinerea
Bebryce parastellata
Scleracis guadalupensis
Leptogorgia hebes
Leptogorgia punicea
Leptogorgia cardinalis
Leptogorgia virgulata
Leptogorgia setacea
Leptogorgia euryale
Viminella barbadensis
Renilla reniformis
Sclerobelemnon theseus
Stylatula elegans
Virgularia presbytes

References Cited

Suggested Reading/Viewing


Family Nidaliidae

Nidalia occidentalis Gray, 1935

Nidalia occidentalis Gray, 1935:60.

Remarks. Nidalia occidentalis is easily distinguishable from other octocorals in the SAB by its stiff, barren stalk and capitate head bearing the monomorphic polyps and conical calyces. The stalk bears large (up to 1 mm), slightly curved, tuberculated spindles while the anthocodiae contain smaller needle-like rods in a collaret and points arrangement, and small flat platelets. The large spindles are six times longer than wide, a feature that distinguishes N. occidentalis from N. rigida, which bears thicker spindles. In life, one SERTC Nidalia occidentalis specimen had an orange stalk and red terminus bearing white polyps. In the preserved state the colors are slightly duller. The examined specimens reach 20 mm in length.

Atlantic distribution: North Carolina to French Guiana, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, 37-440 m (one record off Venezuela indicates collection from 914 m) (Deichmann, 1936; Bayer, 1961; Verseveldt, 1978; NMNH collections; SERTC collection).



Nidalia occidentalis (live specimen, S1384 )
Figure 1. Nidalia occidentalis (live specimen, S1384 ).

Nidalia occidentalis (S1384) sclerites. a, b) large spindles from capitulum; c, d) small spindles from capitulum; e-f) small platelets from calyx and anthocodia; h-j) needles from polyp
Figure 2. Nidalia occidentalis (S1384) sclerites. a, b) large spindles from capitulum (scale bar = 200 µm); c, d) small spindles from capitulum (scale bar = 100 µm); e-f) small platelets from calyx and anthocodia (scale bar = 20 µm); h-j) needles from polyp (scale bar = 100 µm).

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