Chorizopora brongniartii (Audouin, 1826)


Chorizopora brongniartii is an encrusting bryozoan that forms broad, spreading sheets. The species is thin and translucent, and often it is only when dried that it is clearly visible. Autozooids are oval, occasionally pear-shaped or irregular, broadening at the distal end (furthest from the colony origin). They range in size from 0.45-0.6 by 0.25-0.3 mm.


Chorizopora brongniartii is abundant off all British coasts. It is widespread in both temperate and tropical shelf waters, however the species shows marked variation in size and zooid morphology over its geographical range. Tilbrook (2006) suggested that a more thorough examination of the material assigned to C. brongniartii may illuminate geographical variations in this species, or a species complex of geographically and morphologically distinct species.


The species is typically found on hard substrates, especially shell, but it is also able to colonise calcareous algae and Posidonia seagrass. It is found in subtidal waters down to at least 100 m, and can be the most abundant species on offshore shell banks.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith