PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sea Cucumber 

Scoliorhapis theeli (Heding, 1928)

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Scoliorhapis theeli has: 10 tentacles, each with 7 pairs of digits; mouth end of body densely covered with dark brown or purple papillae (small short soft finger-like projections); hook ossicles in clusters under the papillae, hooks 100-240 um (microns) long; body length about 170 mm long. Museum Victoria has many specimens of Scoliorhapis from Victorian waters. These specimens vary considerably and show a range of significant differences to Scoliorhapis theeli, such as being significantly smaller, having fewer tentacle digits, having papillae evenly distributed over the body, having scattered hooks in the body wall, and having smaller hooks.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Echinodermata
Class:
Holothuroidea
Order:
Apodida
Family:
Chiridotidae
Genus:
Scoliorhapis
Species:
theeli

General Description

Body worm-like with thin soft body wall. No tube feet. Tentacles number 10 or 12 with up to 7 pairs of digits per tentacle. Up to 17 cm long.

Biology

This is one of only two species from this genus recorded from Australian waters - the type specimens are from Port Jackson in New South Wales. However, the individuals found in Victoria show a range of significant differences from the species description suggesting that the correct identity of these individuals is unknown.

Habitat

Sediment areas, to depth of at least 82 m.

Soft substrates

Distribution guide

Eastern and southern Australia.

Species Group

Sea cucumbers

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)
Deep ( > 30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

17 cm

Diet

Organic matter

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Native to Australia

Species Code

MoV 667

Identify

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author O'Loughlin, P. M.

Mark O'Loughlin is an Honorary Associate in marine invertebrates at Museum Victoria.

citation

Cite this page as:
O'Loughlin, P. M., 2011, Sea Cucumber, Scoliorhapis theeli, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 27 Apr 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/4854

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