Botrylloides violaceus

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Botrylloides violaceus
Botrylloides violaceus.jpg
Botrylloides violaceus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Tunicata
Class: Ascidiacea
Order: Pleurogona
Family: Styelidae
Genus: Botrylloides
Species: B. violaceus
Binomial name
Botrylloides violaceus
(Oka, 1927) [1]

Botrylloides violaceus is a colonial tunicate of the genus Botrylloides. Its native range is the in Northwest Pacific from Southern China to Japan and Siberia.[2] Colonies attach and grow on solid surfaces and substrates, and consist of individuals arranged in twisting rows. Outside its native range, it is considered an invasive species and are becoming more common in coastal waters of North America and other waters around the world, likely being spread by shipping industries.[3]

In the San Francisco Bay area, B. violaceus can be readily found on boat docks in the Richmond Marina. The ecological impact of B. viollaceus in this region remains unknown.


Zooids are embedded in a transparent tunic and are all connected to one another by a network of blood vessels that terminate in ampullae (small sac-like structures) at the periphery of the colony. Their color varies from bright orange to reddish or dull purple. These tunicates usually have 8 branchial tentacles and 11 rows of stigmata.[4]


  1. ^ Gittenberger, Arjan (2015). "Botrylloides violaceus Oka, 1927". World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved 2016-02-25. 
  2. ^ Cohen, Andrew N. (2005). "Botrylloides violaceus". Guide to the Exotic Species of San Francisco Bay. San Francisco Estuary Institute. Retrieved 2009-03-03. 
  3. ^ Fuller, Pam (2006-04-24). "NAS - Species FactSheet (Botrylloides violaceus)". USGS Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  4. ^ Prince William Sound Regional Citizens' Advisory Council (2004). "Fact sheet 15" (PDF). NON-INDIGENOUS AQUATIC SPECIES OF CONCERN FOR ALASKA. Prince William Sound Regional Citizens' Advisory Council. Retrieved 2009-03-04.