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Diversity of intertidal marine sponges from the western coast of Portugal (North-east Atlantic)

  • A. Regueiras (a1) (a2), A. Alex (a1), M. S. Costa (a1) (a3), S. Pereira (a1) and V. Vasconcelos (a1) (a2)...

Abstract

Sponges are important components of intertidal marine communities. There is a lack of information about intertidal marine sponge diversity in the western coast of Portugal (North-east Atlantic). In the present work we identified the most common intertidal sponges of the western coast of Portugal, and made a comprehensive list of the intertidal species described so far for this region. Sponges belonging to the Classes Calcarea and Demospongiae were identified, the former class for the first time at these locations. Demospongiae are the most common intertidal sponges, present in all sampling locations. We used an integrative approach for Demospongiae identification, using both morphological and molecular characters. Molecular identification, using a CO1 marker proved to be helpful in the identification to the genus level, despite some limitations, such as difficulty in amplification experienced for sponges as well as non-target organisms. A total of 170 specimens were collected. Seven specimens (five species) belonged to the Class Calcarea and 163 specimens (23 species) to the Class Demospongiae. The demosponge Hymeniacidon perlevis was present at all sample locations. Calcarean species were primarily found in samples taken along the south-western coast.

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Corresponding author

Author for correspondence: V. Vasconcelos, E-mail: vmvascon@fc.up.pt

References

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