The coral excavating sponge Cliona delitrix is one of the most aggressive and conspicuous excavating sponges on Caribbean reefs. While C. delitrix is very prominent displaying its typical encrusting growth form (β-stage) on the Caribbean island of Bonaire, it is rather elusive and only exhibits a papillated habitus (α-stage) on the neighboring island of Curaçao. Here I document the first two encrusting specimen of C. delitrix on Curaçao and discuss potential explanations for island-specific differences in its habitus and occurrence. An increase of encrusting specimen could have profound consequences for Curaçaoan reefs and should thus be monitored closely.
Marine Biodiversity Records
Very little information exists about the cetaceans of Aruba, Curaçao and Bonaire (ABC Islands), in the southern Caribbean. During the first dedicated cetacean surveys for the coastal waters of Aruba, photographic evidence for the occurrence of false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis) and spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) was obtained. These represent the first confirmed records of P. crassidens and S. frontalis for the ABC Islands and of S. longirostris for Aruba.
A dead dolphin found on Bonaire in August 2011 is identified as adult Fraser’s dolphin Lagenodelphis hosei, a new species for the Dutch Caribbean. A first closer examination showed a collapsed lung, stomach parasite infection and abundant mouth ulceration as indications of its health status. The animal was relatively fresh and did not die very long before it was found. Like more often with stranded deep diving cetacean species within the area, remnants of crustacean were found in its beak indicating recent foraging.