Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK

Research Article

Habitat and distribution of the warm-water barnacle Solidobalanus fallax (Crustacea: Cirripedia)

A.J.  Southward a1c1, K.  Hiscock a1, J.  Moyse a3 and A.S.  Elfimov a4
a1 Marine Biological Association, Citadel Hill, Plymouth, PL1 2PB, UK
a2 MUMM, Marine Environmental Management Section, Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, 3e en 23e Linieregimentsplein, B-8400, Oostende, Belgium
a3 336 Gower Road, Swansea, SA2 7AE, Wales, UK
a4 Department of Invertebrate Biology, Moscow State University, Moscow 119899, Russia

Article author query
southward aj   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
hiscock k   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
moyse j   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
elfimov as   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


New records are given of the occurrence of the warm-water barnacle Solidobalanus fallax in Britain and Europe. This barnacle is not found on rocks or stones, but settles on biological substrata, including algae, cnidarians, bivalves, gastropods and crustaceans. It also settles on plastic bags and nets, plastic-coated objects such as crab and lobster pots and octopus pots made of ceramic or plastic. With one exception the species was unrecorded in Europe before 1980; it may have increased in abundance during recent years as a result of rising temperatures. The cyprid larvae, which can metamorphose on plastic Petri dishes, appear to be adapted to seek out ‘low energy’ surfaces. One of the habitats colonized by S. fallax is the sea-fan Eunicella verrucosa, where it seems to have increased in recent years, possibly to the detriment of the cnidarian host. Solidobalanus fallax has the potential to be a serious pest of fish-farming structures to the south of Britain.

(Received April 28 2004)
(Accepted August 31 2004)

c1 e-mail: [email protected]