Holothuria (Metriatyla) scabra   Jaeger,  1883 (Sea Cucumber)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Holothuroidea

Image copyrights: Sumaitt Putchakarn

Size:30 mm - 400 mm TL; male attains maturity at 21.0 cm and the females at 21.3 cm.

Weight: The mean total weight in male was 290 g and in female 310 g.

Color: Brown with small white spots dorsally, or a few pale blotches, sides becoming pale and sole milky white.

Body is robust with both the ends blunt. The dorsal side is convex and the ventral side is flat; skin in large specimens is very thick ( 1O- 15 mm) and slimy to touch. On the dorsal side, papillae are scattered and often inconspicuous. On the ventral side the pedicels densely distributed without any arrangement. Each dark spot on the ventral side represents one pedicel. There are two large polian vesicles and a single stone canal. The calcareous ring is of the usual type; the left respiratory tree is much larger than the right. The paired radial muscles are not in firm contact with the body wall.

The spicules consist of tables and buttons. Smaller specimens have large buttons with five pairs or holes and a single hole at each end; all buttons are knobbed; irregular perforated plates also present; tables short and the margins not quite round with horizontal cross has and a crown of spines at the top; each table has few to many holes. The spire consists of four vertical bars which terminate in a few spines.

Its food mainly consists of organic matter which contains mud, sand, shell debris, bivalves and algae. It is a non selective feeder; light plays a vital and controlling role in burrowing habit of this species. The reproductive cycle shows five stages of maturity which are immature, maturing, early mature, late mature and spent.

Synonym (s)
Holothuria (Microthele) tigris Brandt, 1835
Holothuria albida Savigny in Selenka, 1867
Holothuria gallensis Pearson, 1903
Holothuria saecularis Bell, 1887

Common Name (s)
• Sandfish
Economic Importance and Threats

Habitat:  Benthic, Sandy, Muddy


• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Palk Bay INDIA (Record: 03/1988-02/1990)
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA (Record: 03/1988-02/1990)
• Tamil Nadu, Tuticorin INDIA (Record: 03/1988-02/1990) (Depth: 4-20 mts)
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Diglipur INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Rangat Bay INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Port Blair INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Mandapam INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Tuticorin INDIA
• Gujarat, Jamnagar INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Marine Biological Station, Chennai, Tamil Nadu (2003) Checklist of marine fauna of Tamil Nadu Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Available at - http://tnenvis.nic.in
  • (1995) Studies on the biology, ecology and fishery of the sea cucumber Holothuria (Metriatyla) scabra Jaeger from south east coast of India Mariculture Research under the Postgraduate Programme in Mariculture ICMFR Special Publication ICMFR 61 13-17 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/cgi/users/login?target=http%3A%2F%2Feprints.cmfri.org.in%2F6728%2F1%2FTH_44.pdf
  • Putchakarn, S Some coral reef echinoderms from the eastern coasts of Thailand The Swedish Museum of Natural History Available at - http://www.nrm.se/en/menu/researchandcollections/departments/invertebratezoology/research/factsoninvertebrates/galleryofechinodermimages/somecoralreefechinfromthailand.6890_en.html
  • James, DB (1995) Taxonomic studies of the species of holothuria (Linnaeus, 1767) from the seas around India. Part II Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society Bombay Natural History Society 92(1) 190-204 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/7436/1/450-J._BOMBAY_NAT.HISTORY_SOC_1995.pdf
  • Sastry, DRK (2007) Echinodermata of India : An annotated list Records of Zoological Survey of India Occassional paper No. 271 ZSI, Kolkata 1-387 Available at - http://zsi.gov.in/checklist/Echinodermata_India_Checklist.pdf
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at - eprints.cmfri.org.in/3975/1/Special_Publication_No_12_Revised.pdf

Page last updated on:2011-12-23

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