The bryozoan Amathia verticillata (delle Chiaje, 1822) fouling harbours of the southeast coast of India: re-evaluating its status.
The "spaghetti bryozoan" Zoobotryon verticillatum (delle Chiaje, 1822) recently synonymised as Amathia verticillata (delle Chiaje, 1822) was first described from Naples, Italy. This ctenostome also occurred in the Bay of Bengal, east coast of India, where it has been long treated as a native species, due to its long presence in the region. However, recent re-appraisal of its global distribution suggests the species was native to the Caribbean region. This study and a literature survey documented the occurrence of this bryozoan along the coast of Tamil Nadu, India, and summarized records of the species from other localities. Amathia verticillata has a scattered distribution in the central Indian Ocean and mostly occurs on man modified habitats. Indeed, it appeared to be absent from natural habitats along the coasts of India. Thus we concluded that A. verticillata is non-indigenous to the coast of India, where its presence can be attributed to human-mediated dispersal, mainly by shipping.