Symbiosis between mollusks and corals
The Pedicularia genus of mollusks includes predatory ectoparasites that live and feed on Stylasteridae corals, commonly known as lace corals. These mollusks are found throughout the eastern Atlantic near the Azores and into the Mediterranean Sea. Pedicularia sicula switches from female to male as the shell grows above 4 mm. This specimen from our marine invertebrate collection can be seen growing on the host coral.
Paula E. Cushing, PhD
Senior Curator of Invertebrate Zoology
Andrew Doll, MS
Zoology Collections Manager