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Sea Gooseberry

Beroe cucumis Fabricius 1780

Behaviour

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Swims with the oral end facing forward; but is also capable of swimming backwards. The mouth opening is closed while swimming. When catching pray, the mouth becomes round and opens wide. The body contracts sharply and the prey (often as large or larger than the animal) is sucked into the stomodeum.

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Diagnostic Description

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Can be distinguished from co-occuring species B. abyssicola by:
- more watery body substance (B. abyssicula is more solid)
- by the color of the stomodeum, which is never brightly colored in B. cucumis
-lack of diverticulae in the paragastric canals

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Distribution

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Pan-oceanic species

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Morphology

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Body elongate, sac-like, somewhat flattened, about 2 times longer than wide. Mouth opening is large, occupies the entire oral end of the animal. The opposite (aboral) end of the body carries the aboral organ with a mineral statolith inside. The aboral organ is surrounded by polar fields, the outer edges of which carry branching outgrowths. From the aboral organ originate 8 ciliary grooves, which reach the first combs of 8 meridional rows of combs. The combs are formed by fused cilia and serve for locomotion. Tentacles are absent. The mouth leads into a throat (stomodaeum), which leads to a funnel (infundibulum), and then into the meriodional canals, which can branch numerous times. The funnel also gives origin to 2 paragastric canals, which extend along the length of the throat almost to the mouth opening. Gonads (ovaries and seminal glands) are located along the meridional canals. Usually clear, some specimens are red in color. Feed on other ctenophores. Comb rows of juvenile stages are much shorter than of adults.

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Size

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Size up to 160 mm.

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Trophic Strategy

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Feeds on the ctenophore Bolinopsis infundibulum. Can survive long periods of starvation.

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Beroe cucumis

provided by wikipedia EN

Beroe cucumis is a species of comb jelly in the family Beroidae. It is found in the Atlantic Ocean. It was first described by the Danish missionary and naturalist Otto Fabricius in 1780.[2]

Description

Beroe cucumis has a transparent, sac-like body, often somewhat compressed, and reaches a maximum length of about 15 cm (6 in). The wide mouth is at one end. The body has eight longitudinal rows of cilia that extend from the aboral end (opposite end to the mouth), three quarters of the way along the animal. The cilia are arranged on short transverse plates and beat in synchrony to propel the animal through the water, giving a shimmering effect. The general body colour is pink, especially along the rows of cilia, and the plates are bioluminescent. There is a figure of eight shaped ring of small papillae around the aboral tip. Gastrovascular channels extend from the stomach through the body wall beneath the rows of cilia, and these have short side branches, which distinguishes Beroe cucumis from the otherwise similar Beroe gracilis. Juveniles of the two species are indistinguishable.[2][3]

Distribution

Beroe cucumis is found in the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea, including the Skagerrak and the Kattegat. It sometimes occurs in the Mediterranean Sea. It is a pelagic, open water species and its depth range is not known.[2]

Ecology

Beroe cucumis is a predator and mostly feeds on other comb jellies, particularly Bolinopsis infundibulum; these are pulled into the large mouth and swallowed whole.[3]

The comb jelly Mnemiopsis leidyi is an invasive species originally native to the western Atlantic coastal waters that was introduced into the Black Sea in the 1980s, with deleterious results to the ecosystem. Since then it has spread to the Caspian Sea, the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. In the Black Sea, some measure of control was achieved when another predatory comb jelly, Beroe ovata, was introduced.[4]

Mnemiopsis leidyi was first recorded in the Mediterranean Sea in 1990 and in 2009, large swarms were present in some areas. Beroe cucumis is native to the northern Atlantic Ocean and sometimes occurs in the Mediterranean Sea, and it is being monitored to see if it can provide some level of control of M. leidyi. In 2012, Beroe cucumis was found off the coast of Israel for the first time, and there is proof that it preys on M. leidyi, as an individual was found with a partially digested M. leidyi in its stomach.[4]

References

  1. ^ Collins, Allen G. (2014). "Beroe cucumis Fabricius, 1780". WoRMS. World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved 2015-03-14.
  2. ^ a b c van Couwelaar, M. "Beroe cucumis". Zooplankton and Micronekton of the North Sea. Marine Species Identification Portal. Retrieved 2015-03-15.
  3. ^ a b Barnes, Morvan (2008). "A comb jelly - Beroe cucumis". Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information. MarLIN. Retrieved 2015-03-15.
  4. ^ a b Galil, Bella S.; Gevili, Roy (2013). "A moveable feast: Beroe cucumis sensu Mayer, 1912 (Ctenophora; Beroida; Beroidae) preying on Mnemiopsis leidyi A. Agassiz, 1865 (Ctenophora; Lobata; Bolinopsidae) off the Mediterranean coast of Israel". BioInvasions Records. 2 (3): 191–194. doi:10.3391/bir.2013.2.3.03.
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Beroe cucumis: Brief Summary

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Beroe cucumis is a species of comb jelly in the family Beroidae. It is found in the Atlantic Ocean. It was first described by the Danish missionary and naturalist Otto Fabricius in 1780.

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Biology

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Phosphorescent

Reference

Leloup, E. (1952). Coelentérés [Coelenterata]. Institut royal des Sciences naturelles de Belgique: Brussels, Belgium. 283 pp.

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