Aplidium benhami
directions_boat This is an invasive or introduced species.

Aplidium benhami

Size: Colonies to 6 cm

Distribution: Spotty, but widely distributed in SA gulfs

Habitat: Rocky reef, seagrass beds and jetty pylons

Depth: Lower intertidal to 10 metres

This introduced compound ascidian, originally from New Zealand, can be found in a variety of environments, growing on seagrass, jetty pylons or rocks. It is a translucent orange in colour, with the zooids forming circular or star-shaped systems. Like other Aplidium species, such as A. opacum, it has white-rimmed apertures, but can be distinguished by the spiked lobes on its branchial aperture, and the visible atrial apertures, which are large and gaping.