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Herklots, 1858

Pteroeides sp. (3)

Type species: Pteroeides spinosa (Ellis, 1764)

Total number of species estimated: 17

Description: Colonies stout and feather-like. Symmetry of rachis bilateral throughout. Axis present throughout length of colony. Polyp leaves present, well-developed and rigid due to the presence of one to may supporting rays composed of long needle-like sclerites. Accessory leaves may be present between the main leaves. Anthocodiae of autozooids are retractile into the fleshy distal portion of the polyp leaves or into rounded calyces that are not densely spiculated. Siphonozooids minute, numerous and crowded in a conspicuous proximal zone of each polyp leaf. Sclerites are smooth, not three-flanged: needles, spindles or rods of the polyp leaves, rachis, and peduncle. The ends of some needles may be very finely tuberculated. Zooxanthellae not reported.

Habitat: Shallow-water sandy flats and slopes adjacent to reefs; also in deeper water.

Range: The highest diversity of species is in the tropical western Pacific.

Ecology: Bioluminescense has been reported in Pteroeides spinosum .

Additional remarks: Clastres et al. (1984) report novel diterpenes from Pteroeides laboutei . Datta et al. (1990) report the isolation of a bioactive sterol from Pteroeides esperi . Williams (1995) provided phylogenetic evidence to consider the family Pteroeididae as a synonym of the Pennatulidae.

Genus Pteroeides