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Meoma ventricosaLamarck, 1816Meoma ventricosa

PhylumClassOrderFamilyGenusSpeciesSubspecies
EchinodermataEchinoideaSpatangoidaBrissidaeMeomaventricosaventricosa
Habitat
Areas of coarse sand and shell fragments, either associated with turtle grass beds and patch reef, in pockets on reef flats, or deep-water sandy areas.
Distribution
Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean
Natural History Notes
The urchins ingest material from the seafloor, such as sand and crushed shell, and feed most actively at night. Meoma v. ventricosa may form large feeding aggregations. Predators include loggerhead turtles, stingrays, other fish, helmet conches, and the sea star Oreaster reticulatus. The small crab Dissodactylus primitivus infests 80-100% of individuals, and generally lives near the mouth or inside the esophagus.
Depth
2-200m
Characteristics
This species reaches a length of 200 mm. The test is high and covered with short spines. All spines are red-brown; the ground color of the test and of the muscle bases of spines is a darker red-brown than the spines. The urchin's presence is usually indicated by a slight mound in the sand at the head of a distinct trail and a concentration of coarser sediments of shell fragments over the top of the apical system.
In Bocas Del Toro
Reported ByJacome, G. Marine Invertebrate Taxonomy Workshop, Bocas del Toro, August 2003
LocalitySTRI point (Matumba bay)
Compiled by
Lexi Weintraub
Images
Meoma ventricosa
Meoma ventricosa
Links
Reference
Collin, R., M.C. Diaz, J. Norenburg, R.M. Rocha, J.A. Sanchez, A. Schulz, M.L. Schwartz and A. Valdes. 2005. Photographic identification guide to some common marine invertebrates of Bocas Del Toro, Panama. Caribbean Journal of Science 41: 638-707.

Hendler, Gordon, John E. Miller, David L. Pawson, and Porter M. Kier. 1995. Sea Stars, Sea Urchins, and Allies - Echinoderms of Florida and the Caribbean. Smithsonian Institution Press. Washington D. C. 390pp.
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