Publicaciones ZM

S S Matos-Pita, F Ramil and A Ramos

Marine lobsters and lithodids (Crustacea: Decapoda) from Mauritanian deep-waters (NW Africa).

Regional Studies in Marine Science,, 2018.


This paper deals with species of the deep-water marine lobsters and lithodids collected on soft and rocky bottoms during the four Spanish Maurit surveys from 2007 to 2010 in Mauritanian waters, at depths between 80 and 2000 m. The collection is represented by eight species included in the infraorders Astacidea, Achelata, and Polychelida, and by five species of the family Lithodidae. The true lobster Nephropsis atlantica, the blind lobster Stereomastis nana, and the king crab Paralomis cristulata are reported for the first time in Mauritanian waters, while the presence of the slipper lobster Scyllarus subarctus is confirmed in the area. New data on the bathymetric distribution of P. cristulata and Lithodes ferox are also included. © 2018 Elsevier B.V.

B Calero, A Ramos and F Ramil

An uncommon or just an ecologically demanding species? Finding of aggregations of the brittle-star Ophiothrix maculata on the Northwest African slope.

Deep-Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 131: 87-92, 2018.


Ophiuroidea constitutes the largest class of the phylum Echinodermata. It includes families with suspension-feeder behaviour that can be found in dense aggregations in all oceans worldwide. Ophiothrix maculata was known as a rare suspension-feeder brittle star, with only four records in the Eastern Central Atlantic dating from almost 100 years ago. During the ten multidisciplinary Spanish and Norwegian surveys carried out from 2004 to 2012 off Northwest Africa, between the Gibraltar Strait and the Sierra Leone border from 19 to 1888 m depth, we sampled 1298 stations. We gathered about one million individuals and 124 kg of brittle stars at 501 of the stations. Eight hundred and thirty-two specimens of Ophiothrix maculata were collected at six localities on the continental slope off Mauritania, Western Sahara and Guinea Bissau, at depths between 155 and 594 m. The Guinea Bissau samples represent the southernmost current record for the species. Even though Ophiothrix maculata has been previously recorded only in isolation, we discovered dense concentrations on the Mauritanian slope on the Wolof’s Seamount (580 individuals) and off the Western Sahara, in a Lophelia pertusa reef (202 individuals). In this paper, we describe these findings and discuss the association of this species to hard-bottom habitats and high primary production areas, outside of the oxygen minimum zone (OMZ). We also analyse what other factors may explain the patchy distribution of O. maculata on the Northwest African slope. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

S S De Matos-Pita, S Castillo and F Ramil

Contribution to the knowledge of the deep brachyuran fauna (Crustacea: Decapoda) in waters off Mauritania (NW Africa).

Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 97 (6): 1273-1305, 2017.


Four multidisciplinary oceanographic surveys were conducted in November and December from 2007 to 2010, along the Mauritanian coast (NW Africa). A total of 10,514 brachyuran crabs belonging to 33 species were captured in 316 hauls at depths between 79 and 1867 m. The most specious family was Inachidae represented by nine species; the remaining 24 species belonged to 16 other brachyuran families. Monodaeus cristulatus is reported for the first time since its original description. Seven other species, Ethusa rugulosa, Pseudomyra mbizi, Inachus grallator, Macropodia gilsoni, Macropodia hesperiae, Solenolambrus noordendei and Spinolambrus notialis extend their range of distribution northwards and, together with Goneplax barnardi, are reported here for the first time in Mauritanian waters. New data about depth ranges are reported for Acanthocarpus brevispinis, Ethusa rugulosa, Inachus aguiarii, Inachus grallator, Inachus nanus, Macropodia macrocheles, Solenolambrus noordendei, Spinolambrus notialis, Liocarcinus corrugatus and Monodaeus cristulatus. New data relating to the spawning period for most of the species are also included, as are some biogeographic and bathymetric considerations about brachyurans studied in the area. © Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 2016.

A Ramos, J L Sanz, J L Pelegrí, L Fernández-Peralta, P J Pascual-Alayón, F Ramil, S Castillo, E García-Isarch, F Rocha, M Gil and B Calero

An Overview on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Off Mauritanian Deep-Waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 615-660, 2017.


Human activities in continental margins have progressively increased during the last decades, threatening vulnerable marine ecosystems in many continental slopes, such as cold-water coral reefs, seamounts and canyons. In order to protect these ecosystems and ensure the sustainable management of resources, countries and organizations should endorse effective policy actions. However, nowadays about only 0.8% of the oceans and 6% of the territorial seas belong to conservation area systems, a lack of protection that is particularly acute in deep-sea waters. The Mauritanian continental margin is the outcome of exceptional marine features, with abrupt canyon systems, sediment slides and a giant carbonate. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

E García-Isarch, S S Matos-Pita, I Muñoz, S M Mohamed Moctar and F Ramil

Decapod assemblages in Mauritanian waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 355-391, 2017.


We studied the decapods collected in four trawling surveys conducted in Mauritanian waters, in 281 hauls performed at depths between 81 and 1825 m, in November-December 2007-2010. A total of 214,982 specimens with a biomass of 1.6 tonnes was captured, Nematocarcinidae being the most abundant family, mainly due to one single species, Nematocarcinus africanus. Parapenaeus longirostris and Glyphus marsupialis were the species that most contributed to the total biomass, while Acanthephyra pelagica was the most common in the studied area. With a total of 118 species, belonging to 39 families, Mauritanian waters are more diverse in decapods than other comparable zones, probably due to the coexistence of tropical and temperate species. Two new species were described and some records increased the geographic range of certain species in the Atlantic. Five main assemblages were identified: shelf (< 100 m), deep shelf-upper slope (100-400 m), deep reef (400-550 m), middle slope (550-1400 m) and deep slope (1400- 1800 m). Species of each assemblage are typified. Depth was the main factor structuring the assemblages, along with depth-dependant variables such as bottom temperature, longitude and organic matter content. Latitude also influenced assemblage structure. Greatest abundance and biomass occurred on the deep reef, in relation to minimum oxygen values (1.0-1.3 ml l-1), which may favour the abundance of certain species, such as N. africanus, but negatively affect other species, resulting in a diversity reduction. Diversity generally increased with depth, the highest values being registered on the deep slope. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

A Ramos, J L Sanz, F Ramil, L M Agudo and C Presas-Navarro

The giant cold-water coral mounds barrier off mauritania.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 481-525, 2017.


This chapter describes the main features of the giant mounds structure running parallel to the shelf break along the Mauritanian slope between the Senegalese border and Cape Timiris. At over 580 km long, it is the world’s largest identified cold-water coral mounds barrier and, in our opinion, conforms to a single province, the Mauritanian Province. The Maurit series of Spanish-Mauritanian oceanographic surveys collected multibeam echosounder data, performed 16 conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) profiles and 13 rock dredge samplings, which led to the mapping of the reef complex, oceanographic characterization of water masses and faunistic studies. The reef framework is mostly composed of dead coral, mainly Lophelia pertusa, with a minor fraction of Madrepora oculata. Associated fauna mainly consists of Acesta excavata and other bivalve and prosobranch molluscs, soaked in abundant, fine compacted mud. At least 150 macrobenthic species of 27 high-range taxa inhabit this reef. The coral surface is either almost devoid of sessile fauna or poorly colonized by small encrusting epifaunal species. We only found fragments of living L. pertusa in the four southernmost stations. The multivariate analysis clearly groups some areas where corals and other suspension-feeders exhibit the highest diversity. Despite their small size, the 17 taxa of suspension-feeders represent 75% of abundance and biomass Surprisingly, despite the unfavourable history of climatic change episodes, current environmental conditions, deterioration and overall faunistic poverty of the mounds, Lophelia specimens still survive in some areas, sheltering communities of apparently similar structure to those on well-developed cold-water coral reefs in Northern Atlantic latitudes. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

A Ramos, F Ramil and J L Sanz


In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, xi, 2017.

A Ramos, F Ramil and J L Sanz

Deep-sea ecosystems off Mauritania: An introduction.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 1-51, 2017.


The waters surrounding the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, located in the Northwest African region, harbour one of the four major upwelling systems and productive areas of the world’s oceans. Along 754 km of the desert coastline, the permanent upwelling phenomena and seasonal shifting of the oceanographic front strongly influence the water mass structures, climate and species distribution in the Mauritanian EEZ . Despite oceanographic and faunistic interest and the threats of demersal deep-sea fisheries and oil exploration, for the past fewdecades,marine research inMauritaniawas performed to obtain information on the Banc d’Arguin and other coastal ecosystems; only recently, research is being focused on the study of slope habitats. Between 2007 and 2010, the Spanish Oceanographic Institute launched a partnership programwith the Mauritanian Institute for Oceanographic Research and Fisheries and the University of Vigo (Spain) to study the resources and ecosystems in Mauritanian deep waters. Four multidisciplinary expeditions were conducted using the Spanish R/V Vizconde de Eza, and geomorphological prospection and oceanographic and biological sampling were performed. Special efforts were made to characterize the Banc d’Arguin canyon systems, the giant coral carbonatemounds barrier and a newly discovered seamount. In this monograph,we tried to compile, in one volume, the main findings of theMaurit surveys and provide a detailed description of the bathymetry, geomorphology and oceanography, and biodiversity and structure of demersal fishes and benthic communities that inhabit the soft- and hard-bottom habitats of the Mauritanian slope. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

S Castillo, F Ramil and A Ramos

Composition and distribution of epibenthic and demersal assemblages in Mauritanian deep-waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 317-353, 2017.


Quantitative data were collected with a 3.5 m beam-trawl gear at 25 stations along five latitudinal transects, covering five bathymetric strata from 100 to 2000 m depth. More than 500 species belonging to 35 epibenthic high-range taxa are present in Mauritanian deep-sea bottoms. Pisces, Decapoda and Polychaeta, represented by 111, 80 and 56 species, respectively, constituted the richest groups, being the first two collected at all stations. Decapoda were dominant in abundance (55.8% of the total), although in biomass they shared their dominance with Actinopterygii and Holothuroidea (29.4, and 26.0%, respectively). Although suspension feeders were represented by 131 species (25.7%), they only accounted for 9% of the abundance and 1% of biomass (small-sized species). Low diversity indices varied widely between localities but showed no latitudinal pattern. Richness and densities decreased with increasing depth, a strongly marked trend in the case of densities, which peaked on the deep shelf and upper slope (150-300 m), while the biomass remain standing showing only minimum values at 500 m depth. Depth seems to be the strongest factor determining the structure and composition of the four main epibenthic assemblages identified on the deep shelf (150 m), upper slope (300-550 m), middle slope (1000 m) and deep slope (1600 m). The two shallowest assemblages were clearly separated from the deeper ones and were typified by different decapods and fish species, while the two deepest assemblages were characterized by echinoderms and fishes. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

B Calero, F Ramil and A Ramos

Echinoderms of the mauritanian deep-sea waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 445-480, 2017.


Echinoderms are the most important taxa of megabenthic invertebrates on the Mauritanian deep-sea floor, both in density and biomass. The phylum is represented by approximately 82 species, Ophiuroidea and Asteroidea being the most diverse classes (25 and 23 species, respectively), followed by Holothuroidea and Echinoidea (19 and 12 species, respectively). Crinoidea is poorly represented by only three species. Holothuroidea (sea cucumbers) are, undoubtedly, the main component of deep Mauritanian echinoderms, accounting for 85.5% of numerical abundance and 96.0% of biomass. Species belonging to Echinothurioida are dominant among the sea urchins. The most common echinoderm species are Phormosoma placenta, Enypniastes eximia, Psilaster cassiope, Benthothuria funebris, Ophiernus alepidotus, Pseudarchaster gracilis gracilis and Ophiura flagellata. The Mauritanian echinoderm fauna are mostly composed of species with Atlantic distribution (80.5%) and a smaller group of wide distribution species (19.5%). Only three species, two sea stars and one ophiuroid, could be considered as endemic to Macaronesian African waters: Hymenaster roseus, Dyptaster mollis and Ophiothrix maculata. The bathymetric distribution of species and multivariate analysis clearly identify two main assemblages: the first groups the stations located on the deep shelf and upper slope (<400 m), and the second stations group located at greater depths along the continental slope. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

A Ramos, F Ramil, J L Sanz and C Presas-Navarro

A first insight into the megabenthos of Mauritanian canyons.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 527-559, 2017.


The composition of megabenthic communities from the Northern Mauritanian canyons was studied using data and material obtained during the four Maurit surveys, accomplished in November-December of 2007-2010. Cartography of the canyons was carried out using a multibeam echosounder and a high resolution seismic system (TOPAS). Oceanographic data were obtained in 29 vertical CTD profiles located in four transects along the canyons. The megabenthos survey was limited to canyon edges and included 11 stations sampled with a rock dredge. Twenty nine canyons and other minor channels, grouped in four large complex systems, were located in the Arguin Province. The canyons, with very steep walls, can reach down to 700 m depth and extend over 8-70 km in length along the slope. The water mass influencing the canyons correspond to the South Atlantic Central Water (SACW). The megabenthos species richness was estimated to be over 206 species, distributed among 29 high?range taxa. Hydroids, sponges, decapods, bivalves, polychaetes and prosobranchs showed the highest species richness, oscillating from 29 to 15 species. In terms of feeding strategies, suspension-feeders dominated the species richness (63%), abundance (75%) and also biomass (94%). While ophiuroids composed the largest proportion of total abundances (23%), demosponges dominated the biomass (80%). Multivariate analysis identified two megabenthic assemblages mainly segregated by its trophic strategy. The first cluster was defined by strong dominance of suspension?feeders and higher values of diversity indexes, and included four stations where living corals were collected. The second cluster was dominated by scavengers, carnivorous and detritivorous species, with much lower diversity. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

A Ramos, F Ramil and J L Sanz

Deep-sea ecosystems off Mauritania: Research of marine biodiversity and habitats in the northwest African margin.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 1-683, 2017.


This book compiles the main findings of the multidisciplinary long-term research program developed in the continental margin of one of the more productive and unknown areas of the world oceans, Northwest Africa. The more than 25,000 preserved fishes and benthic invertebrates and quantitative data collected in 342 trawling stations, the 267 oceanographic profiles, the 211 sediment samples and the 28,122 km2 prospected by multi?beam echo sounding allowed to obtain an overview of the amazing biodiversity of the demersal and benthic fauna inhabiting soft- and hard-bottom habitats, as well as the fascinating geomorphology and oceanography, hidden in the Mauritanian slope. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017. All rights reserved.

J L Sanz, F Ramil, L M Agudo and A Ramos

Wolof’s knoll: A small seamount on the Mauritanian continental slope.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 561-591, 2017.


One of the objectives of the Maurit-1011 survey was the environmental and faunistic characterization of a small seamount of 200 m in height, discovered during the Maurit?0911 expedition, on the upper continental slope south of Nouakchott, at 17°08′ 50″N and 16°46′ 38.1″W. It is an isolated conical structure with small ridges, almost parallel to the edge of the continental shelf and not connected to nearby coral mounds barrier. The geomorphology of this submarine elevation, as well as the debris from a hydrothermal vents or cold seeps discovered in the rock dredge samples suggests a diapiric association because no hydrothermal benthic fauna was found. The summit of the seamount was covered with sponges belonging mainly to the family Geodiidae, and ophiuroids belonging to the suspension-feeders family Ophiotrichidae. We also found accompanying fauna comprising about 50 species, mainly consisting of molluscs and decapods. Despite its small size but taking into account the richness of the suspension-feeders community living on it, this Wolof’s Seamount (so called to honour the artisanal fishermen who first discovered it) could be promoted as a marine protected area in the Mauritanian continental margin. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

F Rocha, R Fernández-Gago, F Ramil and A Ramos

Cephalopods in Mauritanian waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 393-417, 2017.


A total of 16,036 cephalopods belonging to 48 species were caught on the Mauritanian continental shelf and slope, between 80 and 2000 m depth, in November-December of 2007-2010 during the joint Spanish-Mauritanian surveys. Samples were collected using a commercial bottom trawl. Ommastrephidae was the most abundant family (71.1%) in number and weight. Neritic and benthic species of Loliginidae, Octopodidae and Sepiidae represented 7.3, 6.2 and 5.3% of the total number, respectively. A checklist of 132 Mauritanian species is shown. The geographical and bathymetric distribution of species sampled in the area is discussed. Eight species, Mastigoteuthis flammea, Cycloteuthis akimushkini, Muusoctopus fuscus, M. janarii, Bathypolypus arcticus, B. biardii, B. valdiviae and Graneledone verrucosa are recorded for the first time in Mauritanian waters. This is the first time that M. fuscus is cited in Atlantic waters and that B. valdiviae is observed in the northern hemisphere. Two main cephalopods assemblages, Shelf and Slope, were identified in the zone. Both are largely dominated by ommastrephid species which could constitute an important resource not currently exploited in the area. This work provides the first data on benthic octopods species that inhabit the deep waters of Northwest Africa. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

M Gil and F Ramil

Hydrozoans from Mauritanian deep-waters.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 418-444, 2017.


During the four Maurit surveys carried out annually from 2007 to 2010, 342 trawl stations were sampled off the Mauritanian coast between 80 and 2000-m depth. Hydroids were captured at 174 stations, totalling 6169 colonies belonging to 63 species and 19 families. Most of the species were Leptothecata and only seven belonged to Anthoathecata. Thirty-two of the 63 species are new records for Mauritania. Plumulariidae showed the highest species richness (8 species), followed by Sertulariidae and Campanulariidae (7 species), Lafoeidae, Haleciidae and Aglopheniidae (6 species). The most abundant were Sertulariidae, followed by Aglaopheniidae, Plumulariidae, Campanulariidae, Halopterididae and Haleciidae. The ability of hydroids to colonize Mauritanian soft bottoms was driven by hydrorhizal modifications for anchoring the colony to the sediment and by epizoism on 11 invertebrate groups. Families whose species developed both strategies and those which were typically epibionts on hydroids were the most frequent and abundant. Most of the species were eurybathic (58 species), with four species recorded only in the coastal realm, 18 exclusively in the deep benthic realm and 41 in both realms. Therefore, overall hydroid diversity was highest in the deep benthic realm. Biogeographical components included two main groups: species with a wide distribution (59%) and species of Atlantic distribution (41%); our results also emphasize the similarity between the Mauritanian hydroid fauna and the Atlantic-Mediterranean region. Only one species, Hydractinia multitentaculata (Millard 1975), has West African distribution. No endemic species were reported. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

F Ramil and A Ramos

An overview on bathyal soft-bottoms megabenthos off Mauritania.

In Deep-Sea Ecosystems Off Mauritania: Research of Marine Biodiversity and Habitats in the Northwest African Margin,, 277-315, 2017.


The composition and structure of megabenthic communities of bathyal soft-bottoms off Mauritania were analysed, based on data and material collected at 291 trawling stations accomplished during the four Maurit surveys carried out in November-December of 2007-2010. A total of 551,281 specimens with a corresponding wet weight of 2.2 tons were recorded and more than 700 species of benthic invertebrates belonging to 37 high-range taxa were identified. The best-represented group in terms of specific richness was Decapoda with 118 species, followed by Polychaeta, Porifera and Hydrozoa (74-63 species). In terms of biomass, Holothuroidea clearly dominates the megabenthic communities representing the 83% of the total, while in numerical abundance the dominance was shared by Decapoda (39%) and Holothuroidea (34%). The distribution of megabenthos showed latitudinal patterns along the Mauritanian coast, with a decreasing trend southwards for specific richness, Shannon and Pielou indexes, but with a reverse figure for abundance and biomass that reached their maximum values in the southern area. The bathymetric distribution showed a decreasing trend with depth only for Shannon and Pielou but species richness, abundance and biomass reached their highest values in deep waters. Multivariate analysis identified four megabenthic assemblages structured by depth. The giant coral mounds barrier together with the minimum oxygen values obtained at the same depths seems to perform the main faunistic discontinuity separating the shelf and upper slope assemblages from those located at middle and lower slope. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017.

M Gil and F Ramil

The genus Diphasia L. Agassiz, 1862 (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa) in Northwest Africa.

Zootaxa, 4363 (3): 301-349, 2017.


This paper is the result of the study of large collections of Sertulariidae Lamouroux, 1812 (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa, Hydroidolina) obtained from continental margins of Northwest Africa by several Spanish and Norwegian surveys between 2004 and 2012. Material collected from Lusitanian seamounts by the French Seamount 1 expedition and from the Great Meteor Bank by the German survey Meteor 42/3 were also examined. A total of 12 species belonging to the genus Diphasia were studied and illustrated, and four new species were described: Diphasia leonisae n. sp., Diphasia saharica n. sp., Diphasia africana n. sp., and Diphasia anaramosae n. sp. Diphasia attenuata, Diphasia fallax and Diphasia tropica were not represented in the collections. However, they have been discussed here because they had been previously reported in the study area or in the eastern North Atlantic. One species was only identified to the genus level. The syntype material of Diphasia attenuata var. robusta Billard, 1924, neotype of Diphasia delagei Billard, 1912, and comparison material for the other species that have been preserved in several zoological collections were also examined. Besides, an identification key for these species is provided. Copyright © 2017 Magnolia Press.

S S De Matos-Pita and F Ramil

New species of Neopilumnoplax Serène in Guinot, 1969 (Decapoda, Brachyura, Mathildellidae) from Northwest Africa with a key to the genus.

Marine Biodiversity, 46 (1): 253-260, 2016.


Neopilumnoplax corallicola n. sp. is described from waters off Mauritania on the basis of two specimens collected during the Spanish-Mauritanian survey “Maurit-0911” from 488 m over a giant cold-water coral reef running from Cape Timiris to the Senegalese border. The new species is readily separated from its congeners by the shape of the front and anterolateral teeth, the low granulation on the dorsal carapace, and the morphology of the cheliped and ambulatory legs. This is the first record of the family from the Northeastern Atlantic and the second record of the genus in West Africa. A diagnosis of the family Mathildellidae with a key to genus level, as well as dichotomous and tabular keys to the world species of the genus Neopilumnoplax, are included. © 2015, Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

J A Agís, F Ramil and D R Calder

One new genus and three new species of plumulariid hydroids (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa, Plumulariidae) from the western Pacific Ocean, with a re-examination of Plumularia insignis Allman, 1883 and related taxa.

Zootaxa, 4169 (1): 57-86, 2016.


One new genus (Schizoplumularia) and three new species (Schizoplumularia vervoorti, S. geniculata and S. elegans) of plumulariids are recognized and described from large collections of plumularioid hydroids collected in New Cale-donia and vicinity during several French expeditions. During taxonomic studies of these hydroids, colonies were com-pared with type material of Plumularia insignis Allman, 1883 and several other similar species-group taxa. As a result, three of the latter (P. flabellum Allman, 1883, P. conjuncta Billard, 1913, and P. billardi nom. nov.) are recognized as valid in addition to P. insignis. The binomen P. billardi is a replacement name for P. insignis var. gracilis Billard, 1913. In being elevated to the rank of species in this work, it becomes an invalid junior primary homonym of several others having the same name. © 2016 Magnolia Press.

S S De Matos-Pita and F Ramil

Hermit crabs (Decapoda: Crustacea) from deep Mauritanian waters (NW Africa) with the description of a new species.

Zootaxa, 3926 (2): 151-190, 2015.


Thirteen hermit crab species of the families Diogenidae, Paguridae and Parapaguridae were captured in deep waters off Mauritania during Maurit surveys. A new species of the genus Paguristes, Paguristes candelae n. sp., is described. Areopaguristes mauritanicus n. comb. is proposed for Paguristes mauritanicus Bouvier, 1906 and Pseudopaguristes marocanus n. comb. for Paguristes marocanus A. Milne-Edwards & Bouvier, 1892; the females of the latter species are reported for the first time. Our data extends the geographical distribution of Pseudopaguristes marocanus southwards and that of Paragiopagurus macroceros northwards. Both species, together with Diogenes pugilator (Roux, 1829), are recorded for the first time in Mauritanian waters. New data about bathymetric ranges are also reported for Pseudopaguristes marocanus n. comb., Areopaguristes mauritanicus n. comb. and Paragiopagurus macroceros. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.

S S De Matos-Pita and F Ramil

Additions to thalassinidean fauna (Crustacea: Decapoda) off Mauritania (NW Africa) with the description of a new genus and a new species.

Zootaxa, 4020 (3): 571-587, 2015.


The Maurit surveys along the Mauritanian coast revealed the small collection of thalassinideans examined in this work. A total of four species were identified, of which Ezaxius ferachevali n. gen., n. sp. is described and figured here. Calocaris macandreae Bell, 1853 is the most abundant species, while the presence of Calocarides coronatus (Trybom, 1904) is con-firmed on the West African coast. Trypaea oblonga n. comb. is proposed for Callianassa oblonga Le Loeuff & Intès, 1974 and it has been recaptured for the first time since its original description, with the addition of a female specimen. We also include remarks on the current status of thalassinidean systematics. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.

J A Agís, W Vervoort and F Ramil

Hydroids of the families Kirchenpaueriidae Stechow, 1921 and Plumulariidae McCrady, 1859 (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa) collected in the Western Pacific Ocean by various French Expeditions.

Zoosystema, 36 (4): 789-840, 2014.


This publication is the third in a series of accounts on large collections of Plumularioidea McCrady, 1859 (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa, Hydroidolina) obtained during several French expeditions to the Philippines region, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Fiji, and the Marquesas Islands. Additional material from Mozambique was also examined and is discussed. A total of 17 species, belonging to the families Kirchenpaueriidae Stechow, 1921 (two species) and Plumulariidae McCrady, 1859 (15 species), are scrutinized and illustrated in the present report. Three new species of the genus Plumularia Lamarck, 1816 are described (Plumularia bathyale n. sp., Plumularia contraria n. sp., Plumularia pseudocontraria n. sp.). The name Plumularia milsteinae n. nom., is proposed for Plumularia spiralis Milstein 1976, a permanently invalid junior homonym of Plumularia spiralis Billard, 1911. Polyplumaria kossowskae (Billard, 1911) is recorded for the first time since its original description. Two species of Plumularia are identified only to the genus level. Type materials of Plumularia habereri Stechow, 1909 and Dentitheca hertwigi Stechow, 1909, and the syntypes of all varieties of Plumularia habereri described by Billard (1913), have also been examined. © Publications Scientifiques du Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, Paris.

S S De Matos-Pita and F Ramil

Squat lobsters (crustacea: Anomura) from Mauritanian waters (West Africa), with the description of a new species of munidopsis.

Zootaxa, 3765 (5): 418-434, 2014.


This paper is the result of the study of a squat lobsters collection obtained along the Mauritanian coast, between 91 and 1867 m depth, during the ‘MAURIT’ surveys carried out in the period from 2007 to 2010. Eumunida bella de Saint Laurent & Macpherson, 1990 (Chirostyloidea) and six species of Munida and Munidopsis (Galatheoidea) are reported in the present work. A new species, Munidopsis anaramosae n. sp. collected off northwestern Banc d’Arguin at 1000-1012 m depth, is described and illustrated. The presence of an eyespine that arises distally from the middle end of the cornea, walking legs merus spinose on dorsal and ventral margins and cheliped merus ventrally unarmed distinguish it from related species. Munida chunii Balss, 1913 is redescribed here and the new records of Munida guineae Miyake & Baba, 1970, M. speciosa von Martens, 1878 and Munidopsis chunii Balss, 1913 extend their geographical distribution northwards, and in the case of the last species, increase its bathymetric range. © 2014 Magnolia Press.

A Conde, J Domínguez, J M Novais and F Ramil

First record of Cordylophora caspia (Hydrozoa: Cnidaria) in the Tagus estuary, central Portugal.

Marine Biodiversity Records, 6, 2013.


The Ponto-Caspian hydroid Cordylophora caspia has been found for the first time in the Tagus estuary. There is only one previous citation for this invasive species in Portuguese waters. The colonies of C. caspia were branched and had healthy gastrozooids and gonophores. The specimens were collected from a saline boundary zone characterized by high fluctuations in salinity (maximum of 15.3 and minimum of 0.2) and high suspended solids loading. Cordylophora caspia is capable of colonizing man-made infrastructures such as industrial facilities and can inhabit both brackish and freshwater environments. These features of C. caspia, together with its resilience when in a dormant stage (menonts), indicate that the monitoring of this invasive species is advisable in the Tagus estuary. © Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 2013.

J A Agís, W Vervoort and F Ramil

Hydroids of the family Halopterididae (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa) collected in the western Pacific by various French expeditions.

Zoosystema, 31 (1): 33-61, 2009.


This paper is the second result of the study of large collections of Plumularioidea (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa, Leptolida), collected in the seas surrounding New Caledonia, in the Philippines and in Indonesian waters by French expeditions. A total of 13 species belonging to the genera Antennella (five species), Cladoplumaria (one species), Halopteris (four species), Monostaechas (two species) and Corhiza (one species) are described or mentioned in the present report; most of which are illustrated. Three new species, Antennella sinuosa n. sp., Antennella megatheca n. sp. and Corhiza pauciarmata n. sp. are described and another, Halopteris concava (Billard, 1911) is recorded for the first time since the original description. Two species, Antennella sp. and Monostaechas sp. are only identified to the genus level. © Publications Scientifiques du Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, Paris.

A L Peña Cantero and F Ramil

Benthic hydroids associated with volcanic structures from Bransfield Strait (Antarctica) collected by the Spanish Antarctic expedition GEBRAP96.

Deep-Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 53 (8-10): 949-958, 2006.


During the Spanish Antarctic expedition GEBRAP96 a survey to study the benthic fauna associated with deep volcanic structures in the Bransfield Strait was carried out. Amongst the benthic samples, a small collection of hydroids was gathered. A total of 10 species, most of them Leptothecata, was recorded; only two species of anthoathecates were present. Kirchenpaueriidae and Sertulariidae were the dominant families, and Symplectoscyphus and Oswaldella the predominant genera. Oswaldella niobae sp. nov. is described and figured. Since samples were taken at great depth, the lowest limit of the bathymetrical distribution for several species is distinctly increased. None of the samples showed signs of hydrothermal phenomena and the species of hydroids present were typical representatives of the Antarctic benthic hydroid fauna. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

J A Ansín Agís, F Ramil and W Vervoort

Cladoplumaria anomala gen. nov., sp. nov., a new genus and species of the family Halopterididae (Cnidaria: Hydrozoa) from the Chesterfield Islands region (Pacific Ocean).

Cahiers de Biologie Marine, 45 (4): 313-324, 2004.


This paper is the first result of the study of large collections of Plumularioidea (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa, Leptolida) collected in the seas surrounding New Caledonia (Pacific Ocean) by French expeditions. A new genus of the family Halopterididae is described and its relations with other representatives of this family are discussed. The gonosome in its shape approaches the type of phylactocarp also met with in Aglaopheniidae; while the gonothecae (female with nematothecae and male without nematothecae) are nearer to those of the family Halopterididae.

M Canals, R Urgeles, F Estrada, A M Calafat, J Sorribas, B Alibès, I Cacho, J L Casamor, J Fabrès, M J Prieto, M A Rodríguez, M Farran, F Ramil, M A O De Batist, T Van Cauwenberghe, T Prades, P Jornet, C Mir and R Forcada

Internal structure and seismic facies of the deep-water sediment drifts off northern Graham Land, Antarctic Peninsula: Results from a very high-resolution survey.

Annals of Glaciology, 27: 265-267, 1998.


High-resolution Bottom Parametric Source profiles have revealed details of the sedimentary structure of the upper 150 ms of the sediment drifts off the Pacific margin of Graham Land, Antarctic Peninsula. These profiles show that the dominant process is hemipelagic sedimentation, although instability processes are also important, as shown by the widespread presence of transparent, chaotic and semi-transparent acoustic facies. These new data are relevant to the evaluation of the palaeoenvironmental potential of the sediment drifts and show that the amount of remobilised sediment is significant in some of the drifts.

M Canals, F Estrada, R Urgeles, A M Calafat, J Sorribas, B Alibés, I Cacho, J L Casamor, J Fabrés, M J Prieto, M A Rodríguez, M Farran, F Ramil, M A O De Batist, T Van Cauwenberghe, P Journet, J Prades, C Mir and R Forcada

Very high-resolution seismic definition of glacial and postglacial sediment bodies in the continental shelves of the northern Trinity Peninsula region, Antarctica.

Annals of Glaciology, 27: 260-264, 1998.


The sea-floor morphological features and sedimentary cover on the shelves of the northern Trinity Peninsula, Antarctica, result from glaciomarine processes. Roughness of the sea floor is apparent at scales from kilometre-wide glacial troughs to metre-wide iceberg scours. The sedimentary cover is unequally distributed, with a preference for sheltered areas and sea-floor depressions where deposition obeys local controlling factors. An uppermost draping layer caused by settling of fine particles was observed in several of the studied settings. Large parts of the shelves are devoid of sediments, and there the sea floor shows widespread, mostly relict evidence of glacial erosion. The observed sea-floor morphologies and sedimentary cover highlight the return to grade of the shelves from the northern Trinity Peninsula region.

P M Arnaud, C M López, I Olaso, F Ramil, A A Ramos-Esplá and A Ramos

Semi-quantitative study of macrobenthic fauna in the region of the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula.

Polar Biology, 19 (3): 160-166, 1998.


During the BENTART 95 Expedition, 24 Agassiz trawls for macrozoobenthos sampling were carried out at depths of 40 850 m, from north of Livingston Island to the Antarctic Peninsula. The samples were analysed using a semi-quantitative method, and with the resulting numerical data, transformed into a six-point scale, we constructed a Bray-Curtis similarity matrix. A total of 74,624 specimens, belonging to 38 taxonomic groups, were collected. The most abundant group was Polychaeta Sedentaria, with 360 of the total, whereas the highest relative masses were from Ascidiacea (23%), Echinoidea Regularia (18%) and Ophiuroidea (16%). The maximum number of specimens recorded was 15,600 ind./50 1. Cluster analysis separated stations located in Foster Bay (Deception Island), characterised by low taxonomic richness and high relative mass (average: 26.7 kg). A zonation of ascidians, regular sea urchins and ophiuroids was observed at Deception Island, clearly related to depth and substratum type. The remaining stations were separated into two groups. The first one comprised the shallowest stations (40-130 m), dominated by sessile active filter-feeders, belonging to Ascidiacea, Demospongia and Bryozoa, and probably related to high primary production zones. The second group comprised deeper stations and was dominated by classes exhibiting a diversity of trophic strategies: Ophiuroidea and Asteroidea, to 400 m, and Polychaeta Sedentaria at greater depths.

M D C Barcia Leal, O Reverter Gil, E Fernandez Pulpeiro and F Ramil

Subtidal bryozoans of Vigo Bay (northwest Spain).

Annales – Institut Oceanographique, Paris, 69 (2): 249-259, 1993.


Provides a checklist of the 77 species of Bryozoa found in the subtidal zone of Vigo Bay. Tegella unicornis, Parasmittina trispinosa and Terebripora comma are recorded for the first time on the coast of the Iberian Peninsula and Alderina imbellis on the Galician coast. -English summary