Five sea cucumber species including one new species of the genus Stichopus are reported from the shallow coral reefs of Straits of Malacca. The new species Stichopus fusiformiossa has unusual fusiform spicules in the tentacles, which are not found in the other species of the genus. Pseudo-tables and large perforated plates are newly recorded for Stichopus hermanni Semper, 1868 and Stichopus vastus Sluiter, 1887, respectively.
A new species of the genus Sabellaria Lamarck, 1818 (Annelida: Polychaeta: Sabellariidae) is described from the intertidal zone of Jeram, Selangor, Malaysia. Sabellaria jeramae n. sp. is a gregarious species that constructs large reefs several hundreds of meters long and 50-200 m wide. The new species is distinguished from other congeners by the character combination of the presence of a single kind of middle paleae with conspicuous morphology, and outer paleae with long frayed teeth. Morphological features of the species are described and compared to those of all congeneric species. We also compare the reef structure and geographical distribution of the new species to those of the members of the family Sabellariidae around the world, demonstrating the ecological traits of the reefs.
We establish a new interstitial polyclad species, Theama japonica sp. nov., based on specimens collected from coarse-sandy habitats in three Japanese main islands (Hokkaido, Honshu, and Shikoku) along the coasts of the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Japan. Theama japonica is characterized by i) two pairs of cerebral eyespots and four to six precerebral eyespots; ii) eosinophilic secretion glands distributed in the distal half of the inner ventral part of the prostatic vesicle; iii) a conical penis papilla, bent up dorsally, with a sclerotized inner wall; iv) the prostatic sheath with an inner angular fold on the dorso-distal side; and v) the external cilia longer dorsally than ventrally. Partial sequences of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene from 20 specimens collected at eight localities along Japanese coasts represented 19 haplotypes. The uncorrected p-distances among these COI haplotypes fell within intraspecific variations observed in other polyclads. A network analysis based on these COI haplotypes suggested a geographically non-cohesive genetic structure of the species, possibly indicating the species' high dispersibility. Molecular phylogenetic analyses based on a concatenated dataset of 18S and 28S rDNA sequences showed T. japonica formed a clade with other Theama species. The resulting tree also indicates that our new species is more closely related to Theama sp. from Colombia than species from Panama and Croatia.