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  Holothuria leucospilota (Brandt, 1835)
  Family Name : Holothuriidae

  Taxonomic Group : Invertebrates (Echinoderm)

  Common Names : Black Sea Cucumber

 
Black Sea Cucumber
  • Ecology, Habitat & Location
    • Ecological Notes :
      In Singapore waters it is recorded on reef flats around islands and on patch reefs. Often found in open exposed situations, sometimes with a thin coating of sand on the body. In contrast, H. leucospilota at other locations in the region generally anchors the posterior part of its body under a rock or similar retreat while extending its body for feeding. The oral tentacles are used to pick up and ingest particulate sediments.
      Habitats :
      Marine
      Distribution :
      Not common and very patchily distributed in the Singapore region. Reclamation and obliteration of reef flat system at the south-east end of Sentosa and Pulau Kukor has resulted in loss of populations of this species at these locations.
  • Conservation
    • Trends & Threats :
      Continued reclamation of reef flats.
      Scientific Interest & Potential Value :
      This and many other species feeding on sea bed particulates are important in the bioturbation of marine sediments. Darwin described this group as the 'earthworms of the sea'. The body wall contains bioactive substances in the form of triterpene glycosides, probably for chemical defence against predators.
      Conservation Notes :
      No longer common in the Singapore region. Creation of sizeable MPAs in the Southern islands is needed to prevent local extinction.
  • Status
    • Singapore Red Data Book 2008 status :
      Vulnerable (VU)
  • References
    • Davison, G.W.H., Ng, P.K.L. & Ho, H.C (Eds.). 2008. The Singapore Red Data Book (2nd Edition). Singapore: Nature Society (Singapore). 285pp 

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