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The main stems of this species bear side branches in alternating series on opposite sides giving a feather-like colony. The colour of living specimens is brown with a green tinge due to zooxanthellae. The feeding polyps are borne in a single series along the side branches, each surrounded by three defensive polyps. A specific feature is the basal leaf of the corbula which projects downwards in this species, rather than being curled round like the rest. Typically 5 cm in height by about 1 cm across the colony. All species of Aglaophenia are similar. Gymnangium montagui is more robust and does not have corbulae.


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© National Museums Northern Ireland and its licensors

Source: Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland

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