Cotylorhiza erythraea Stiasny, 1920 (Scyphozoa: Rhizostomeae: Cepheidae), yet another erythraean jellyfish from the Mediterranean coast of Israel

Bella S. Galil, Lisa Ann Gershwin, Moshe Zorea, Amit Rahav, Shevy B.S. Rothman, Maoz Fine, Hadas Lubinevsky, Jacob Douek, Guy Paz, Baruch Rinkevich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An unfamiliar scyphozoan jellyfish species has been observed along the Mediterranean coast of Israel since 2003. Morphological characters such as the densely anastomosed radial canals and the stalked cupped appendages on the oral arms identified it as closely allied to Cotylorhiza. Comparison with the type of C. erythraea, collected over a century ago in the Suez Canal, shows close similarity. Molecular analyses based on the mitochondrial barcoding gene cytochrome oxidase sub unit I (COI) and 28S ribosomal DNA support its placement among the Cepheidae. This is the fifth-introduced scyphozoan species recorded along the Mediterranean coast of Israel. The presence of sexually mature specimens detected as far back as 2003, and the occurrence of the species in the past summer at sites nearly 90 kms apart, indicate the existence of widespread, established populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-235
Number of pages7
JournalMarine Biodiversity
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are grateful to Oz Rittner, the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History and Israel National Center for Biodiversity Studies, for editing the photographs, to Dr. Arik Diamant, National Center for Mariculture, Eilat, for bibliographic assistance and to J. van Egmond, National Museum of Natural History, Leiden, The Netherlands, for the loan of a specimen identified by Stiasny. Partial funding was received by BSG from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007–2013) under Grant Agreement No. 287844 for the project “Towards COast to COast NETworks of marine protected areas (from the shore to the high and deep sea), coupled with sea-based wind energy potential” (COCONET), and by BR and JD from the Ministry of National Infrastructures, Energy and Water Resources, Israel (Barcoding of the Israeli Marine Biota).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


  • COI
  • Cepheidae
  • Cotylorhiza erythraea
  • Erythraean alien
  • Mediterranean
  • Molecular analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science


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