Overview

Brief Summary

Living Material

Since M. citrina is viviparous and releases larvae instead of eggs, there is little reason for this mistake in identification. The animals are hermaphroditic.

Probably there is no fixed season. Individuals over 12 mm. in length seem to breed continuously (Berrill, 1931).

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Living Material

Since M. citrina is viviparous and releases larvae instead of eggs, there is little reason for this mistake in identification. The animals are hermaphroditic.

Probably there is no fixed season. Individuals over 12 mm. in length seem to breed continuously (Berrill, 1931).

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Comprehensive Description

Description

This species is a simple, solitary ascidian, that sometimes grows in dense clusters. The body is globular in shape, measures 1-4 cm in diameter, and attaches to the substrate at its base. The oral and atrial siphons are positioned anteriorly, and prominent when extended. Overall, the tunic is translucent to greyish-green in colour; the surface is covered with numerous tiny hair-like fibrils, often fouled with pieces of shell, algae, or sediment. A bean-shaped kidney is located on the right side of the body, and along with the reproductive gonads, is often visible through the tunic.

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Description

 A rounded solitary ascidian about 1-3 cm across that often occurs in dense clusters. The colour is grey or greenish-blue and the test is covered with fibrils that may or may not be attached with sand grains, shell fragments etc.Several species had, until recently, been included in Molgula manhattensis: Molgula simplex Alder & Hancock, 1870; Molgula siphonata Alder 1850; Molgula socialis Alder 1848, and Molgula tubifera Orstedt 1844 (Connor & Picton in Howson & Picton, 1997). Separation for the purpose of this review has not been carried out as it is uncertain to what extent authors of papers have worked with Molgula manhattensis sensu stricto. It also seems (Kott 1976 quoted in Kott 1985) that the eastern Atlantic species may be Molgula tubifera and that Molgula manhattensis occurs on the Atlantic coast of North America from Maine to Lousiana. Nevertheless, the Species Directory (Howson & Picton, 1997) lists Molgula manhattensis for Britain and Ireland and so no change in name is suggested here.
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Distribution

Bay of Fundy to Gulf of Mexico
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circum-global
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Bay of Fundy to Gulf of Mexico
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Molgula manhattensis has been introduced to the Northeast Pacific, with confirmed records from British Columbia to California. In addition, this species has been introduced to several other locations around the world, including Australia, China, and Japan. In Great Britain and northern Europe, the species is considered cryptogenic. Its native geographical range includes the northeast United States from Maine to Louisiana.

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Physical Description

Look Alikes

In the Northeast Pacific, Molgula manhattensis is most similar to to other molgulid tunicates, including M. pacifica (Huntsman, 1912), M. pugetiensis Herdman, 1898, and M. verrucifera Ritter and Forsyth, 1917; another non-native species found in the region, M. ficus (Macdonald, 1859); and in Alaska, M. retortiformis Verrill, 1871 and the recently documented M. citrina Alder and Hancock, 1848.

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Ecology

Habitat

infralittoral of the Gulf and estuary
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infralittoral of the Gulf and estuary
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Depth range based on 708 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 28 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): -99 - 578
  Temperature range (°C): 9.899 - 24.203
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.113 - 15.969
  Salinity (PPS): 33.270 - 36.231
  Oxygen (ml/l): 3.960 - 6.328
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.110 - 1.248
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.868 - 7.953

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): -99 - 578

Temperature range (°C): 9.899 - 24.203

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.113 - 15.969

Salinity (PPS): 33.270 - 36.231

Oxygen (ml/l): 3.960 - 6.328

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.110 - 1.248

Silicate (umol/l): 0.868 - 7.953
 
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 Attached to bedrock, boulders, stones and shells in the littoral and sublittoral to depths of 90 m. Molgula manhattensis is found especially in ports and harbours.
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Migration

Alien species

De ronde zakpijp Molgula manhattensis is al lange tijd aanwezig in Europa, langs de oostkust van Amerika en rond Australië. Sommige auteurs zijn er echter van overtuigd dat de Amerikaanse en Europese vormen van deze soort aparte soorten zijn en dat we daarom de ronde zakpijn in Europa niet als een exoot kunnen beschouwen. In België werd de ronde zakpijp voor het eerst waargenomen en gerapporteerd in het midden van de 19de eeuw in de haven van Oostende. Later vestigde de soort zich ook in de havens van Zeebrugge en Blankenberge. De soort zou hier terecht gekomen zijn door vasthechting op scheepsrompen.
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Alien species

The sea grape, Molgula manhattensis, has been present for a long time in Europe, along the east coast of America, and around Australia. Some authors are convinced that the specimens found in America or Europe are different species altogether and therefore in Europe the sea grape can not be considered an exotic species. In Belgium this sea grape was first observed and reported in the middle of the 19th century in the harbour of Ostend. Later the species also established itself in the harbours of Zeebrugge and Blankenberge. The species could have arrived in Belgium via attachment to ship's hulls.
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Alien species

De ronde zakpijp Molgula manhattensis is al lange tijd aanwezig in Europa, langs de oostkust van Amerika en rond Australië. Sommige auteurs zijn er echter van overtuigd dat de Amerikaanse en Europese vormen van deze soort aparte soorten zijn en dat we daarom de ronde zakpijn in Europa niet als een exoot kunnen beschouwen. In België werd de ronde zakpijp voor het eerst waargenomen en gerapporteerd in het midden van de 19de eeuw in de haven van Oostende. Later vestigde de soort zich ook in de havens van Zeebrugge en Blankenberge. De soort zou hier terecht gekomen zijn door vasthechting op scheepsrompen.
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Alien species

The sea grape, Molgula manhattensis, has been present for a long time in Europe, along the east coast of America, and around Australia. Some authors are convinced that the specimens found in America or Europe are different species altogether and therefore in Europe the sea grape can not be considered an exotic species. In Belgium this sea grape was first observed and reported in the middle of the 19th century in the harbour of Ostend. Later the species also established itself in the harbours of Zeebrugge and Blankenberge. The species could have arrived in Belgium via attachment to ship's hulls.
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Associations

Known prey organisms

Molgula manhattensis preys on:
plankton
detritus

Based on studies in:
USA: New Jersey (Brackish water)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • C. H. Peterson, The importance of predation and competition in organizing the intertidal epifaunal communities of Barnegat Inlet, New Jersey, Oecologia (Berlin) 39:1-24, from p. 8 (1979).
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Known predators

Molgula manhattensis is prey of:
Neopanope texana sayi

Based on studies in:
USA: New Jersey (Brackish water)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • C. H. Peterson, The importance of predation and competition in organizing the intertidal epifaunal communities of Barnegat Inlet, New Jersey, Oecologia (Berlin) 39:1-24, from p. 8 (1979).
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Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Diet

plankton feeder
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Diet

plankton feeder
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Life Cycle

Later Stages of Development and Metamorphosis

Adults are abundant on the floats and wharf piles around Woods Hole, Mass. They are far more common than M. citrina, but in the past workers have often confused the two species.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Later Stages of Development and Metamorphosis

Adults are abundant on the floats and wharf piles around Woods Hole, Mass. They are far more common than M. citrina, but in the past workers have often confused the two species.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Reproduction

Fertilization and Cleavage

Berrill (1931) states that at 19° C. the blastopore is closed and the tail bud visible in four hours; hatching occurs in 8 to 11 hours. Secretion of the test, caudal degeneration, and outgrowth of the ampullae (i.e., metamorphosis) occur 18 to 24 hours after insemination.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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The Unfertilized Egg

The eggs are fertilized as they are shed into the water. Cleavage is equal up to the fourth division, and separates the egg into future right and left halves, as in Styela. Gastrulation occurs between the sixth and seventh cleavages, and is a rather specialized form of true invaginative gastrulation.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Breeding Season

These animals keep very well when placed in large fingerbowls on the water table. A continuous gentle stream of sea water should be supplied and dead material removed promptly, since the water will foul very rapidly.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Fertilization and Cleavage

Berrill (1931) states that at 19° C. the blastopore is closed and the tail bud visible in four hours; hatching occurs in 8 to 11 hours. Secretion of the test, caudal degeneration, and outgrowth of the ampullae (i.e., metamorphosis) occur 18 to 24 hours after insemination.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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The Unfertilized Egg

The eggs are fertilized as they are shed into the water. Cleavage is equal up to the fourth division, and separates the egg into future right and left halves, as in Styela. Gastrulation occurs between the sixth and seventh cleavages, and is a rather specialized form of true invaginative gastrulation.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Breeding Season

These animals keep very well when placed in large fingerbowls on the water table. A continuous gentle stream of sea water should be supplied and dead material removed promptly, since the water will foul very rapidly.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Growth

Rate of Development

The larvae normally hatch by means of enzymatic digestion of the chorion. The free-swimming urodele-like tadpoles have vertical tail-fins and a large sensory vesicle containing an otolith which is not destroyed during metamorphosis. There are no gill slits or adhesive papillae visible, and the siphons are undeveloped. The alimentary tract is poorly developed and very yolky. For diagrams of larvae, see the papers by Berrill (1931) and Grave (1926).

A few of the early stages of metamorphosis are figured by Berrill and by Grave. As has already been indicated, fixation is followed by tail degeneration and the outgrowth of a long, primary ectodermal ampulla. When this is fully formed, additional ampullae appear, and in the final state there are two present on one side of the body and three on the other. Pulsations appear early in the primary ampulla, which probably has a respiratory function.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Rate of Development

The larvae normally hatch by means of enzymatic digestion of the chorion. The free-swimming urodele-like tadpoles have vertical tail-fins and a large sensory vesicle containing an otolith which is not destroyed during metamorphosis. There are no gill slits or adhesive papillae visible, and the siphons are undeveloped. The alimentary tract is poorly developed and very yolky. For diagrams of larvae, see the papers by Berrill (1931) and Grave (1926).

A few of the early stages of metamorphosis are figured by Berrill and by Grave. As has already been indicated, fixation is followed by tail degeneration and the outgrowth of a long, primary ectodermal ampulla. When this is fully formed, additional ampullae appear, and in the final state there are two present on one side of the body and three on the other. Pulsations appear early in the primary ampulla, which probably has a respiratory function.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Molgula manhattensis

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


No available public DNA sequences.

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Molgula manhattensis

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 5
Specimens with Barcodes: 5
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Removal of the Chorion

The egg is opaque, with colored yolk; measurements of its diameter vary from 100 microns (Conklin, 1905) to 115 microns (Grave, 1926). Outer follicle cells, which are rounded, form a compact layer around the chorion, and a few inner follicle cells are present. A perivitelline space is visible. In the oviduct the germinal vesicle breaks down, and the egg proceeds to the metaphase of the first maturation division. Eggs are shed at this stage and remain in it until fertilization or death. (See the paper by Berrill, 1931, for further details.)

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Preparation of Cultures

The chorion can be digested off with the stomach juice of crabs or with proteolytic enzymes, before or after fertilization (Berrill, 1932, 1937). This technique is useful for experimental purposes.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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Procuring Gametes

Naturally-shed eggs should be pipetted to fingerbowls of fresh sea water. To artificially-obtained eggs, enough sperm should be added to cause a faint milkiness in the water. The water should be replaced after one or two hours. It is probably advisable to use gametes from different individuals.

The bowls of fertilized eggs should be kept on a water table, and the water changed three or four times during subsequent development. As soon as the larvae begin to swim, they should be decanted or pipetted to fingerbowls of fresh sea water or, if a study of metamorphosis is desired, isolated in separate drops of sea water in Syracuse dishes. When they have firmly attached to these dishes, sea water should be added. The dishes with attached larvae can be stored in an inverted position in wooden racks which are submerged in aquaria of running sea water.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Datasets

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Care of Adults

For experimental work it is usually advisable to obtain naturally-shed eggs. Molgula sheds soon after dawn; however, this process may be delayed by placing several animals in large fingerbowls, and keeping them in the dark until they are needed. They will usually shed about 15 minutes after they are brought into the light.

Eggs and sperm may also be obtained by cutting open the tests of individuals over 12 mm. in length, and pipetting gametes from the genital ducts. This procedure may yield immature as well as mature eggs, since the oviducts in Molgula are short. The eggs should be passed through several changes of sea water, to free them of perivisceral fluid.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
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© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Datasets

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Removal of the Chorion

The egg is opaque, with colored yolk; measurements of its diameter vary from 100 microns (Conklin, 1905) to 115 microns (Grave, 1926). Outer follicle cells, which are rounded, form a compact layer around the chorion, and a few inner follicle cells are present. A perivitelline space is visible. In the oviduct the germinal vesicle breaks down, and the egg proceeds to the metaphase of the first maturation division. Eggs are shed at this stage and remain in it until fertilization or death. (See the paper by Berrill, 1931, for further details.)

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Egg Characteristics and Breeding Season for Woods Hole Species

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Preparation of Cultures

The chorion can be digested off with the stomach juice of crabs or with proteolytic enzymes, before or after fertilization (Berrill, 1932, 1937). This technique is useful for experimental purposes.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Egg Characteristics and Breeding Season for Woods Hole Species

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Procuring Gametes

Naturally-shed eggs should be pipetted to fingerbowls of fresh sea water. To artificially-obtained eggs, enough sperm should be added to cause a faint milkiness in the water. The water should be replaced after one or two hours. It is probably advisable to use gametes from different individuals.

The bowls of fertilized eggs should be kept on a water table, and the water changed three or four times during subsequent development. As soon as the larvae begin to swim, they should be decanted or pipetted to fingerbowls of fresh sea water or, if a study of metamorphosis is desired, isolated in separate drops of sea water in Syracuse dishes. When they have firmly attached to these dishes, sea water should be added. The dishes with attached larvae can be stored in an inverted position in wooden racks which are submerged in aquaria of running sea water.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Egg Characteristics and Breeding Season for Woods Hole Species

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Care of Adults

For experimental work it is usually advisable to obtain naturally-shed eggs. Molgula sheds soon after dawn; however, this process may be delayed by placing several animals in large fingerbowls, and keeping them in the dark until they are needed. They will usually shed about 15 minutes after they are brought into the light.

Eggs and sperm may also be obtained by cutting open the tests of individuals over 12 mm. in length, and pipetting gametes from the genital ducts. This procedure may yield immature as well as mature eggs, since the oviducts in Molgula are short. The eggs should be passed through several changes of sea water, to free them of perivisceral fluid.

  • Berrill, N. J., 1931. Studies in tunicate development. Ii. Abbreviation of development in the Molgulidae. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc., London, ser. B, 219: 281-346.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1932. The mosaic development of the ascidian egg. Biol. Bull., 63: 381-386.
  • Berrill, N. J., 1937. Culture methods for ascidians. In: Culture Methods for Invertebrate Animals, edit. by Galtsoff et al., Comstock, Ithaca, pp. 564-571.
  • Conklin, E. G., 1905. The organization and cell-lineage of the ascidian egg. J. Acad. Nat. Sci, Philadelphia, ser. 2, 13: 1-119.
  • Grave, C., 1926. Molgula citrina (Alder and Hancock). Activities and structure of the free swimming larva. J. Morph., 42: 453-471.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Donald P. Costello and Catherine Henley

Source: Egg Characteristics and Breeding Season for Woods Hole Species

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

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