Hydromedusae, morphologically resembling the Indo-Pacific leptomedusa Lovenella assimilis (Browne, 1905) (Cnidaria: Hydrozoa:Lovenellidae), are reported for the first time in both the eastern English Channel and the southern bight of the North Sea. Analyses of past zooplankton samples from a long-term monitoring program suggest that this non-indigenous species has been present in the eastern English Channel at least since 2007. Genetic analyses identified specimens as Eucheilota menoni based on nearly identical 18S ribosomal RNA gene, mitochondrial cytochrome oxydase subunit gene I (COI) sequences, and 16S Ribosomal RNA gene. Consequently, published morphological descriptions of L. assimilis and E. menoni were compared, and their species status is discussed with regard to morphological and genetic evidence. In conclusion we suggest synonymizing these 2 indistinguishable species.
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|