West Indian fuzzy chiton

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West Indian fuzzy chiton
Acanthopleura granulata.jpg
A live individual of Acanthopleura granulata on a rock in Guadeloupe
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Polyplacophora
Order: Neoloricata
Family: Chitonidae
Genus: Acanthopleura
Species: A. granulata
Binomial name
Acanthopleura granulata
(Gmelin, 1791)
Synonyms

Chiton granulatus Gmelin, 1791, Chiton blauneri Shuttleworth, 1856

Acanthopleura granulata, common name the West Indian fuzzy chiton, is a medium-sized tropical species of chiton.

This species is common within its range in the tropical Western Atlantic, but it is often not noticed, because its color and texture are similar to the rocks on which it lives.

In countries that used to be part of the British West Indies, these and other common intertidal chitons are known as "curb"; the foot of the animal is eaten by people and is also used as bait for fishing.

Description[edit]

Two valves of Acanthopleura granulata, an intermediate plate (32 mm) and a tail plate (21 mm)

This species of chiton grows to be about 7 cm (3 inches) in length. The girdle is densely spiky and usually has a few black bands.

The surface of the valves (or plates) in this species is almost always heavily eroded in adults, but when not eroded, the valve surface is granulated. The valves are thick and heavy.

Distribution[edit]

This chiton occurs from southern Florida to Mexico, south to Panama, and in the West Indies.

Habitat[edit]

Two individuals of Acanthopleura granulata in their natural habitat on a rock in Guadeloupe

This species lives on rocks very high in the intertidal zone. It can tolerate a lot of sun.

References[edit]

  • Malacolog info at: [1]

External links[edit]

  • Smithsonian paper by Peter W. Glynn: [2]
  • Photo of uneroded individual of this species from the Bahamas at: [3]