Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Bugula neritina
(brown bryozoan)

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Datasheet

Bugula neritina (brown bryozoan)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 08 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Threatened Species
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Bugula neritina
  • Preferred Common Name
  • brown bryozoan
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Bryozoa
  •       Class: Gymnolaemata
  •         Order: Cheilostomatida
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Bugula neritina forms flexible bushy colonies, branching biserial, to about 10 cm high and is purplish-brown in colour. Zooids white and globular, with the outer corner pointed (

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Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Bugula neritina (Linnaeus, 1758)

Preferred Common Name

  • brown bryozoan

Other Scientific Names

  • Anamarchis neritina
  • Sertularia neritina

International Common Names

  • English: common bugula

Summary of Invasiveness

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Bugula neritina forms flexible bushy colonies, branching biserial, to about 10 cm high and is purplish-brown in colour. Zooids white and globular, with the outer corner pointed (Bishop Museum 2002, in Gordon and Mawatari, 1992). Zooids are large and measure an average of 0.97 x 0.28 mm. B. neritina differs from other species in this genus in that it possesses no avicularia and no spines. The lophophore measures an average of 0.764 mm in diameter and bears 23 tentacles (SMSFP 2001). Embryos brooded in ovicells are dark brown in colour and measure approximately 0.25 mm in diameter (SMSFP 2001 in Winston 1982).

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Bryozoa
  •             Class: Gymnolaemata
  •                 Order: Cheilostomatida
  •                     Family: Bugulidae
  •                         Genus: Bugula
  •                             Species: Bugula neritina

Description

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Bugula neritina forms flexible bushy colonies, branching biserial, to about 10cm high and is purplish-brown in colour. Zooids white and globular, with the outer corner pointed (Bishop Museum 2002, in Gordon and Mawatari, 1992). Zooids are large and measure an average of 0.97 X 0.28mm. B. neritina differs from other species in this genus in that it possesses no avicularia and no spines. The lophophore measures an average of 0.764mm in diameter and bears 23 tentacles (SMSFP 2001). Embryos brooded in ovicells are dark brown in colour and measure approximately 0.25mm in diameter (SMSFP 2001 in Winston 1982).

Distribution

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Bugula neritina a common fouling organism worldwide, is reported from all seas except sub Arctic and sub Antarctic regions (Bishop Museum 2002). The cosmopolitan distribution of the species appears to be due to shipping introductions (Mackie et al. 2006). Furthermore, genetically divergent but morphologically unrecognised (=’cryptic’) species of B. neritina have been identified in the United States.

Native range: Bugula neritina was widespread before surveys commenced in most areas (Keough and Ross, 1999). One mitochondrial haplotype (based on sequences of the mitochondrial gene COI) is globally widespread, occurring on coastlines in Australia, Curacao, USA and Hawaii, and the UK, indicating a widespread introduction (Mackie, Keough and Christidis, 2006). The native locale of this lineage is unknown from molecular studies. Three cryptic species referred to as B. neritina are known to occur in the USA; these are referred to as Type S and Type D (occurring in California) (Davidson and Haygood, 1999); and a third divergent 'cryptic species' lineage has been identified in the northern part of the taxonomic range in the eastern USA (McGovern and Hellberg, 2003).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes

Sea Areas

Atlantic, Western CentralPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011

Asia

ChinaPresentIntroduced1986 Invasive ISSG, 2011
IndiaPresentIntroduced1971 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-MaharashtraPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
IsraelPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
JapanPresentIntroduced1960 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-HonshuPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
Korea, DPRPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
Korea, Republic ofPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
PhilippinesPresentIntroduced1929 Invasive ISSG, 2011
TurkeyPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011

Africa

EgyptPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
LibyaPresentISSG, 2011

North America

BermudaPresentIntroduced1874 Invasive ISSG, 2011
MexicoPresentIntroduced1950 Invasive ISSG, 2011
USAPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AlaskaPresentIntroduced2000 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-CaliforniaPresentIntroduced1904 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-FloridaPresentIntroduced2001 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced1921 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-MainePresentIntroduced1904 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-OregonPresentIntroduced2000 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-South CarolinaPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
-WashingtonPresentIntroduced2000 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Central America and Caribbean

PanamaPresentIntroduced1930 Invasive ISSG, 2011
Puerto RicoPresentIntroduced1940 Invasive ISSG, 2011

South America

ArgentinaPresentIntroduced1937 Invasive ISSG, 2011
BrazilPresentIntroduced1937 Invasive ISSG, 2011
ChilePresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
EcuadorPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Galapagos IslandsPresentIntroduced1930 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Europe

BelgiumPresentIntroduced1912 Invasive ISSG, 2011
FrancePresentIntroduced1900 Invasive ISSG, 2011
GermanyPresentIntroduced1973 Invasive ISSG, 2011
ItalyPresentISSG, 2011
NetherlandsPresentIntroduced1912 Invasive ISSG, 2011
SpainPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
UKPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-England and WalesPresentIntroduced1912 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Oceania

AustraliaPresentIntroduced1881 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-New South WalesPresentIntroduced1993 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-QueenslandPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
-TasmaniaPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
-VictoriaPresentIntroduced1880 Invasive ISSG, 2011
New ZealandPresentIntroduced1949 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Habitat

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B. neritina colonies are typically found in harbours and embayments, intertidal to 5m, attached to any available hard substrate (Bishop Museum, 2002). Larvae colonise a variety of artificial substrata including hulls (Mackie et al., 2006). Studies have shown B. neritina larvae prefer to attach to rougher surfaces and prefer to attach to organic material. For example, in nature they frequently affix themselves to algae and to established bryozoan colonies (Lynch, 1947). B. neritina is found in euhaline and polyhaline regions (water salinity around 30-18‰) (Winston, 1977).

In North America B. neritina occurs on rocky reefs and seagrass leaves (Hayes et al., 2005).

Habitat List

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CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Littoral
Coastal areas Present, no further details
Marine
Marine Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)

Biology and Ecology

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Nutrition
The bryozoan is a suspension feeder. It has a retractable U-shaped crown of tentacles (lophophore) which bear cilia that create a current, bringing microscopic plankton and organic particles toward the animal. Particles are then guided into the mouth by action of the tentacles and cilia (Bishop Museum 2002).

Reproduction
Each bryozoan colony begins from a single, sexually produced, primary zooid. This zooid undergoes asexual budding to produce a group of daughter cells, which themselves form buds, and so on. Most bryozoans are hermaphroditic, each zooid capable of producing sperm and eggs. Sperm is released into the coelom and the fertilised eggs are retained and brooded for a time before being released (Bishop Museum 2002).
 
Lifecycle stages
Bryozoans have swimming, lecithotrophic larvae that attach and metamorphose within 1 or 2 days following release from the colony. Larvae are initially photopositive but soon become photonegative/Geopositive, settling usually within a few hours of release (Lynch, 1947). Larvae may have gregarious settlement (Keough, 1984). Bugula larvae generally settle throughout the year except during midwinter (Sutherland and Karlson 1977). Field studies in Australia and North America show considerable variation in life history in B. neritina from different habitats, apparently due to genetic or early environmental effects (Keough, 1989; NEMESIS 2006). B. neritina's life history may include an annual period of dormancy, in which colonies recede to a regenerative holdfast (Dyrynda and Ryland 1982). This senescence occurs at differing times of year and appears dependent upon water temperature, with populations in cool-temperate areas receding during winter and populations in warm areas receding over summer months (Keough and Chernoff, 1987).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Introduction pathways to new locations
Aquaculture:Bugula neritina attaches to oyster shells and be transferred along with oyster shippings (Cohen 2005).
Ship ballast water:Bugula neritina can be transported via tiny colonies attached to the sides of ballast tanks or on floating material inside the ballast tanks (Cohen 2005).
Ship/boat hull fouling: Ship/boat hull fouling is a common means of movement of Bugula neritina colonies and a likely source of ongoing introductions.

Local dispersal methods
Agriculture (local):Bugula neritina attaches to oyster shells and be transferred along with oyster shippings (Cohen 2005).
Boat:

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Aquaculture Yes
Crop production Yes

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Ship ballast water and sediment Yes
Ship hull fouling Yes Yes

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Fisheries / aquaculture Negative
Transport/travel Negative

Impact

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General Impacts

Compiled by IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)
 
Bryozoans are one of the main organisms to encrust and foul ships, piers, buoys and other man-made marine surfaces and structures (VMNH 2005). B. neritina populations may tolerate high levels of pollution (including copper) which increases its potential to be a fouling pest. A tolerance to toxicants could provide a competitive advantage in polluted areas (Piola and Johnston 2006). Verification of the chemical tolerances of invasive and non-invasive lineages of B. neritina, and other fouling organisms in general, is needed to test this hypothesis (Josh Mackie., pers.comm., 2007).

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
Impact outcomes
  • Infrastructure damage
  • Negatively impacts aquaculture/fisheries
  • Transportation disruption
Impact mechanisms
  • Fouling
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally accidentally
  • Difficult/costly to control

Uses

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Bugula neritina colonies are the source of a novel chemical compound (bryostatin) which has been shown to be effective against leukaemia and a number of other kinds of cancer. A newly described species of bacterium, which is symbiotic to B. neritina cryptic species 'type D', appears to be the source of bryostatins (Davidson and Haygood, 1999; Davidson et al. 2001).

Uses List

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Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Source of medicine/pharmaceutical

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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Three morphologically cryptic species have been identified based on mitochondrial genetic divergence and bacterial symbionts (Davidson and Haygood, 1999; McGovern and Hellberg, 2003): B. neritina, B. stolonifera and B. turrita.

Bugula turrita can be distinguished from B. turrita by the presence of avicularia. Bugula neritina does not range farther north on the Atlantic Coast than Beaufort, North Carolina, it is replaced along the northern half of the East Coast of USA by Bugula turrita (Lynch 1947).

Prevention and Control

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Management Information 

Compiled by IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)

Preventative measures: A two year study was undertaken for the Department of Environment and Heritage (Australia) by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) to identify and rank introduced marine species found within Australian waters, and those not found within Australian waters. All of the non-native potential target species identified in this report are ranked as high, medium and low priority, based on their invasion potential and impact potential. Bugula neritina is identified as one of ten potential domestic target species most likely to be spread to uninfected bioregions by shipping. B. neritina is also identified as one of ten most damaging potential domestic target species, based on overall impact potential (economic and environmental). A hazard ranking of potential domestic target species based on invasion potential from infected to uninfected bioregions identifies B. neritina as a 'medium priority species' - these species have a reasonably high impact/or invasion potential.

For more details, please see Hayes et al. 2005.

The rankings determined in Hayes et al. 2005 will be used by the National Introduced Marine Pest Coordinating Group in Australia to assist in the development of national control plans which could include options for control, eradication and/or long term management.

It has been suggested that ballast water control measures be implemented to control the spread of B. nertinavia the oyster aquaculture industry (PWSRCAC 2004).

Chemical: Copper-based treatments have been used to control many pest species. The attachment of B. neritina larvae to copper, mercury and control paint was investigated by Wisely (1962) who found that the numbers attaching to the control paint strips was seven times greater than the numbers attaching to copper, and twenty times greater than the numbers attaching to mercury (NIMPIS 2001). Introduction of B. neritina by copper-painted vessels may be aided by a potential tolerance to toxicants (Piola and Johnston 2006).

 

Bibliography

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Bishop Museum. 2002. Bugula neritina (Waters, 1878), Guidebook of introduced marine species of Hawaii. Hawaii Biological Survey, Bishop Museum.

Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science (CEFAS)., 2008. Decision support tools-Identifying potentially invasive non-native marine and freshwater species: fish, invertebrates, amphibians. http://www.cefas.co.uk/projects/risks-and-impacts-of-non-native-species/decision-support-tools.aspx

Cohen, A.N. 2005. Guide to the Exotic Species of San Francisco Bay. San Francisco Estuary Institute: Oakland, USA. http://www.exoticsguide.org/species_pages/b_neritina.html

CONABIO. 2008. Sistema de información sobre especies invasoras en México. Especies invasoras - Otros invertebrados. Comisión Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad. Fecha de acceso. http://www.conabio.gob.mx/invasoras/index.php/Especies_invasoras_-_Otros_invertebrados

Davidson, S. K. and Haygood, M. G. 1999. Identification of sibling species of the bryozoan Bugula neritina that produce different anticancer bryostatins and harbour distinct strains of the bacterial symbiont "Candidatus Endobugula sertula". Biological Bulletin 196: 273-280.

Davidson, S. K., Allen, S. W., Lim, G. E., Anderson, C. M. and Haygood, M. G. 2001. Evidence for the biosynthesis of bryostatins by the bacterial symbiont "Candidatus Endobugula sertula" of the bryozoan Bugula neritina. Applied Environmental Microbiology 67(10): 4531-4537.

Ghobashy, A.F.A. and El Komy, M.M. 1980. Fouling in the southern region of the Suez Canal, Aquatic Ecology 14(3): 179-185.

Hayes, K., Sliwa, C., Migus, S., McEnnulty, F., Dunstan, P. 2005. National priority pests: Part II Ranking of Australian marine pests. An independent report undertaken for the Department of Environment and Heritage by CSIRO Marine Research. http://www.marine.csiro.au/crimp/reports/PriorityPestsFinalreport.pdf

Hill, K., 2001. Bugula neritina. Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce. http://www.sms.si.edu/IRLSpec/Bugula_neriti.htm

Keough, M. J. and Chernoff, H. 1987. Dispersal and population variation in the bryozoan Bugula neritina Ecology 68(1): 199-210.

Keough, M. J. and Ross, J. 1999. Introduced fouling species in Port Phillip Bay. In Marine Biological Invasions of Port Phillip Bay Victoria: 9-11. L., H. C., Campbell, M. L., Thresher, R. E. and Martin, R. B. (Eds.). Hobart: CSIRO Marine Research.

Lynch, W. F. 1947. The behavior and metamorphosis of the larva of Bugula neritina (Linnaeus): experimental modification of the length of the free-swimming period and the responses of the larvae to light and gravity. Biological Bulletin 92: 115-150.

Lynch, W.L. 1947. The behavior and metamorphosis of the larva of Bugula neritina (Linnaeus): experimental modification of the length of the free-swimming period and the responses of the larvae to light and gravity, Biological Bulletin 92: 115-150 http://www.biolbull.org/cgi/reprint/92/2/115

Mackie, J. A., Keough, M. J. and Christidis, L. 2006. Invasion patterns inferred from cytochrome oxidase I sequences in three bryozoans, Bugula neritina, Watersipora subtorquata, and Watersipora arcuata. Marine Biology 149: 285-295.

Mackie, J.A., Keough, M.J. and Christidis, L. 2006. Invasion patterns inferred from cytochrome oxidase I sequences in three bryozoans, Bugula neritina, Watersipora subtorquata, and Watersipora arcuata, Marine Biology 149: 285–295

McEnnulty, F.R., Jones, T.E. and Bax, N.J. 2001. The Web-Based Rapid Response Toolbox. Retrieved 7 December 2006, from NIMPIS database. http://crimp.marine.csiro.au/NIMPIS/controls.htm

McGovern, T. and Hellberg, M. E. 2003. Cryptic species, cryptic endosymbionts, and geographic variation in chemical defenses in the bryozoan Bugula neritina. Molecular Ecology 12: 1207-1215.

National Introduced Marine Pest Information System (NIMPIS), 2002. Bugula neritina species summary. In: Hewitt, C.L., Martin, R.B., Sliwa, C., McEnnulty, F.R., Murphy, N.E., Jones, T. and Cooper, S. (eds). NIMPIS. Retrieved 7 December 2006, from NIMPIS database. http://www.marine.csiro.au/crimp/nimpis/spSummary.asp?txa=6929

NEMESIS (National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System). 2006. Bugula neritina. The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. Retrieved 7 December 2006, from Chesapeake Bay Introduced Species Database http://invasions.si.edu/nemesis/CH-TAX.jsp?Species_name=Bugula%20neritina

NEMESIS (National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System). 2005. Bugula neritina -Invasion History. The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. Retrieved 7 December 2006, from Chesapeake Bay Introduced Species Database. http://invasions.si.edu/nemesis/CH-INV.jsp?Species_name=Bugula+neritina

NEMESIS (National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System). 2004. Bugula neritina - Ecology. The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. Retrieved 7 December 2006, from Chesapeake Bay Introduced Species Database. http://invasions.si.edu/nemesis/CH-ECO.jsp?Species_name=Bugula+neritina

NOBANIS (North European and Baltic Network on Invasive Alien Species). 2005. Bugula neritina. Retrieved 19 December 2006, from NOBANIS database. http://www.nobanis.org/NationalInfo.asp?countryID=DE&taxaID=5818

Perkol-Finkel, S. and Benayahu, Y. 2004. Recruitment of benthic organisms onto a planned artificial reef: shifts in community structure one decade post-deployment. Article in press. http://www.tau.ac.il/lifesci/departments/zoology/members/benayahu/documents/3aip.pdf

Piola, R.F. and Johnston, E.L. 2006. Differential resistance to extended copper exposure in four introduced bryozoans, Marine Ecology Progress Series 311: 103-114. http://www.int-res.com/articles/meps2006/311/m311p103.pdf

Prince William Sound Regional Citizens' Advisory Council. 2004. Non-indigenous Aquatic Species of Concern for Alaska. Fact Sheet 9. Single Horn Bryozoan. http://www.pwsrcac.org/docs/d0015800.pdf

Sutherland, J.P. and Karlson, R.H. 1977. Development and Stability of the Fouling Community at Beaufort, North Carolina, Ecological Monographs 47(4): 425-446.

USGS (United States Geological Survey). 2005. Bugula neritina. http://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/collectioninfo.asp?NoCache=12%2F5%2F2006+4%3A59%3A44+PM&SpeciesID=266&State=&HUCNumber=

Virginia Museum of Natural History (VMNH), 2005. More Bryozoan Information. VMNH Virginia, USA.

Walters, L.J. 1992. Field Settlement Locations on Subtidal Marine Hard Substrata: Is Active Larval Exploration Involved?, Limnology and Oceanography 37(5): 1101-1107. http://aslo.org/lo/toc/vol_37/issue_5/1101.pdf

Winston, J.E. 1977. Distribution and Ecology of Estuarine Ectoprocts: A Critical Review, Chesapeake Science18(1): 34-57.

Wyatt, A.S.J., Hewitt, C.L., Walker, D.I. and Ward, T.J. 2005. Marine introductions in the Shark Bay World Heritage Property, Western Australia: a preliminary assessment, Diversity and Distributions 11(1): 33–44

Contributors

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Reviewed by: Dr. Josh Mackie, Invertebrate Zoology and Molecular Ecology Lab. Moss Landing Marine Laboratories. California USA

Principal sources: Bishop Museum 2002. Bugula neritina (Linnaeus, 1758). Guidebook of introduced marine species of Hawaii.
SMSFP 2001. Bugula neritina (Linnaeus, 1758). Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce.

    Compiled by: IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG) with support from La Fondation d'entreprise Total
 
Last Modified: Thursday, May 08, 2008
 

 

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