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Ectopleura crocea
Image courtesy of Melissa Frey, Royal BC Museum
Ectopleura crocea
Taxonomic Group: Cnidarians-Hydrozoans


The hydrozoan Ectopleura crocea has a polyp stage, but lacks a planktonic medusa stage. It is native to the Atlantic coast of North America where it was first described from Boston, Massachusetts (MA) in 1862. However, even before its description in MA, it was collected from San Francisco Bay, California in 1859 (as Parypha microcephala). On the West coast its range now extends from Mission Bay, California to Alaska. It has also been introduced to Australia, New Zealand, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Azores, Madeira, and South Africa. This hydroid is characteristic of harbors and polluted waters where it is a frequent member of the fouling community. It occurs on a variety of substrates, including rocks, shells, concrete, pilings, and ships’ hulls. It can foul cultured mussels having adverse effects on their growth and condition.

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Fofonoff PW, Ruiz GM, Steves B, Simkanin C, & Carlton JT (2018)
National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System.
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Marine Invasions Lab
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

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