Goose barnacle

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Gooseneck barnacle)
Jump to: navigation, search
Not to be confused with Barnacle goose.
"Pedunculata" redirects here. For other uses, see Pedunculata (disambiguation).
Goose barnacle
Pollicipes pollicipes.jpg
Pollicipes pollicipes
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Maxillopoda
Infraclass: Cirripedia
Order: Pedunculata
Lamarck, 1818 [1]

Goose barnacles (order Pedunculata), also called stalked barnacles or gooseneck barnacles, are filter-feeding crustaceans that live attached to hard surfaces of rocks and flotsam in the ocean intertidal zone.


Some species of goose barnacles such as Lepas anatifera are pelagic and are most frequently found on tidewrack on oceanic coasts. Unlike most other types of barnacles, intertidal goose barnacles (e.g. Pollicipes pollicipes & Pollicipes polymerus) depend on water motion rather than the movement of their cirri for feeding, and are therefore found only on exposed or moderately exposed coasts.


"The goose-tree" from Gerard's Herbal (1597), displaying the belief that goose barnacles produced barnacle geese

In the days before it was realised that birds migrate, it was thought that Barnacle Geese, Branta leucopsis, developed from this crustacean, since they were never seen to nest in temperate Europe,[2] hence the English names "goose barnacle", "barnacle goose" and the scientific name Lepas anserifera (Latin anser = "goose"). The confusion was prompted by the similarities in colour and shape. Because they were often found on driftwood, it was assumed that the barnacles were attached to branches before they fell in the water. The Welsh monk, Giraldus Cambrensis, made this claim in his Topographia Hiberniae.[3] Since barnacle geese were thought to be "neither flesh, nor born of flesh", they were allowed to be eaten on days when eating meat was forbidden by religion.[2]


The order Pedunculata is divided into the following suborders and families:[4]

Heteralepadomorpha Newman, 1987
Iblomorpha Newman, 1987
Lepadomorpha Pilsbry, 1916
Scalpellomorpha Newman, 1987

As food[edit]

Goose Neck Barnacles being enjoyed in a Spanish restaurant, Madrid

In Portugal and Spain, they are a widely consumed and expensive delicacy known as percebes. Percebes are harvested commercially in the northern coast, mainly in Galicia and Asturias, and are also imported from overseas, particularly from Morocco and Canada. The indigenous peoples of California eat the stem after cooking it in hot ashes.[5]


External links[edit]