species: Ctenocella sp. in taxonomy (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Ctenocella sp.

©Anne Hoggett: Ctenocella sp. on the reef slope near Bird Islet, Lizard Island.

©Anne Hoggett: Ctenocella sp. on the reef slope near Bird Islet, at Lizard Island with crinoid Oligometra carpenteri and many brittlestars Ophiothela mirabilis.
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Cnidaria
Class Anthozoa
Order Scleralcyonaceae
Family Ellisellidae
Genus Ctenocella
Species Ctenocella sp.



Distinguishing features

Distinctively shaped colonies with thin, parallel branchlets arising from usually two spreading main branches.


  • Up to 100 cm (Width of colonies at Lizard Island.)



Fabricius and Alderslade (2001) state that Ctenocella pectinata is considered to be the only valid species in the genus. However, WORMS (accessed 11 June 2017) lists five accepted species. The identity of the species at Lizard Island remains to be determined.

by Anne Hoggett


Web resources


  • Fabricius, K. and P. Alderslade (2001). in: Soft corals and sea fans: a comprehensive guide to the tropical shallow water genera of the central-west Pacific, the Indian Ocean and the Red Sea. Australian Institute of Marine Science, Townsville.