Fast Facts: Polycitor Giganteus

  • Is a massive gelatinous colony with a firm translucent ‘skeleton’ and smooth surface;
  • Has a muscular body divided into a short thorax and an especially long abdomen;
  • Is a giant jelly Ascidian;
  • Ascidians (sea squirts) are filter feeders that function by pumping seawater and filtering out suspended food particles from the water column;
  • Ascidians are either solitary individuals or form large colonies;
  • The individuals within the colonies can organise themselves into discrete organelles, so the colony has the appearance of a solitary organism;
  • They are attached to the substrate for most of their life, except for the very short-lived larval stage;
  • Ascidians can reproduce sexually or asexually via budding or fragmentation during events such as storms;
  • Common, on rocks and reefs throughout Australia;
  • Grows to a maximum size of 20cm;
  • Eats plankton or particles; and
  • Found at depth ranges from 0 meters to over 30 meters.

Reference: bie.ala.org.au.

Published by Karina Teuma

karinateuma.com Karina Teuma is a Passionate Marine Biology Enthusiast, Environmentalist, Snorkeller, Freediver, Scuba Diver and more.

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