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The Atoll of Funafuti, Ellice group : its zoology, botany, ethnology and general structure based on collections made by Charles Hedley of the Australian Museum, Sydney, N.S.W.

Family Astræidæ

Family Astræidæ.

Mussa costata, Dana.

Mussa costata, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 179, pl. vii, fig. 2.

Three water-worn fragments which may possibly belong to this species.

Cœloria esperi, Edwards & Haime.

Cœloria esperi, Edwards & Haime, Hist. Nat. Corall., ii., p. 417.

Seven examples of this species are in the collection.

Common in the lagoon, and on the outer reefs.

Hydnophora microconia, Lam.

Hydnophora microconia, Lam., Hist. Anim. sans Vert., ii., 1816, p. 251.

Three specimens obtained on the lagoon reefs.

Astræa versipora, Dana.

Astrœa versipora, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 233, pl. xii., fig. 5.

Four large specimens.

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Very common at low water in the lagoon and on the outer reefs.

Astræa danæ, Edwards & Haime.

Favia dance, Edwards & Haime, Hist. Nat, Corall., ii., p. 442.

Astrœa porcata, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 226, pl. xi., fig. 5.

One specimen.

Common in the lagoons and on the outer reefs.

Astræa Denticulata, Ellis & Solander.

Madrepora denticulata, Ellis & Solander, Nat. Hist. Zoophytes, p. 166, pl. xlix., fig. 1.

Four specimens.

Abundant on the reefs.

Acanthastræa Patula, Dana.

Acanthastrœa patula, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 209, pl. x., fig. 14.

One small example.

The calicles are subcircular, oblong, or polygonal and very unequal in the size of the fossa, and also in the relative thickness of the walls. The former measure from 5 to 10 mm. in diameter, the latter from 2 to 6 mm. in thickness. The septa vary in number from twelve to thirty-six.

The columella consists of a series of compressed denticles, frequently more or less connected.

Among loose stones on the lee side of the atoll.

Acanthastræa echinata, Dana.

Acanthastrœa echinata, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 229, pl. xii., fig. 1.

A single specimen in spirit is in the collection.

The larger calicles are about 9 mm. in diameter. The third cycle of septa is incomplete. The septal spines are from 2 to 3·5 mm. in height.

Colour dark blackish brown.

Occurring with the preceding.

Leptastræa solida, Edwards & Haime.

Leptastrœa solida, Edwards & Haime, Hist. Nat. Corall., ii., p. 512, pl. d 8, fig. 2.

Four specimens of this species were obtained. All are incrusting and assume the shape of the object they have invested, forming irregular nodular masses without any points of attachment.

Occurring among loose stones on the lee side of the reef.

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Leptastræa Transversa, Klunzinger.

Leptastrœa transversa, Klunzinger, Die Korall. Rothen. Meeres, iii., 46, pl. vi., fig. 2.

Three examples.

Incrusting, forming irregular convex plates on dead coral.

Cyphastræa Danæ, Edwards & Haime.

Cyphastrœa danæ, Edwards & Haime, Hist. Nat. Corall., ii., p. 487.

Astrœa microphthalma, Dana, Zoophytes, U.S. Explor. Exped., p. 217, pl. x., fig. 11.

One small example, consisting of a thin incrusting living layer growing on a dead crust of the same species, which completely invests some foreign object.

In the central region of the corallum the calicles are contiguous, the walls being frequently in contact with each other; near the margin they are separated by narrow spaces about half their own diameter.

The calicles are from 1·5 to 2 mm. in diameter, they are prominent, and have the walls and septa exserted.

The costæ and intercalicine spaces are finely echinulate. The echinulæ are from 0·15 to 0·2 mm. apart.

The columella is small, and consists of from three to six sub-spiniform granules.

Obtained in the passage between the islets of the reef.