provided by British Antarctic Survey
Orange/brown to translucent yellow in colour. This species is encrusting but the zooids stand upright connected by little ‘rootlets’ at the base. Many species of Beania occur in the Subantarctic and Magellanic regions but none in the Antarctic.
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5m to deep water, patchily very common in shallows, particularly on boulder undersurfaces. B. erecta is very widespread and occurs at most localities within the Polar Frontal Zone right round Antarctica.
This species is typically found under very large rocks, on cliff faces or particularly on shallow overhangs. It is an extremely good competitor, overgrowing nearly all other encrusters and many other animal types – it is also a common epibiont on, for example, brachiopods. It is a suspension feeder and eats phytoplankton. It is specifically eaten by the nudibranch Charcotia granulosa but probably also incidentally grazed by limpets and echinoids.
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