Amphibalanus amphitrite

Scientific Name:-
Amphibalanus amphitrite

Common Name:-
Striped / purple acorn / Amphitrite's rock barnacle.

Malayalam Name:-




It is a medium-sized surface-fouling, sessile barnacle with distinct vertical bands of purple stripes on it's protective rigid housing plates, known as capitulum plates. It is conical in appearance and largest at the base, with a diamond-shaped opening protected by a movable opercular lid composed of two symmetrical triangular halves. Each of these halves contains two plates, the tergum and the scutum. The operculum opens when is the lid halves are flexed out to the side It grows to about twenty millimetres in diameter.



Common coastal and estuarine organism found on hard natural surfaces such as bedrock, boulders, mollusc shells and mangrove roots. It is also found on artificial surfaces such as the hulls of ships, pilings and seawalls. B. amphitrite is a model organism for studies of fundamental and applied larval settlement. This is due to its invasive behaviour, its worldwide distribution and the ease with which it can be bred in the laboratory. Its genome has been sequenced. B. amphitrite is a hermaphrodite and individuals have both male and female reproductive organs. It is part of the biofouling community and a euryhaline species.


Open seas and estuaries, intertidal and sublittoral. On ships and buoys, piers, etc.,


Balanus amphitrite Darwin, 1854


Chan, Benny K.K. (2012). Amphibalanus amphitrite (Darwin, 1854). Accessed through: World Register of Marine Species at http://www.marinespecies.org/aphia.php?p=taxdetails&id=421137 on 2013-01-02
Darwin, C. (1854) A Monograph on the Sub-Class Cirripedia with Figures of all the Species. The Ray Society, London.
Pillai K. N. (1958). Development of Balanus amphitrite, with a note on the early larvae of Chelonibia testudinaria. Bulletin of the Central Research Institute of Kerala. series C 6: 117–130.
Tristano Bacchetti De Gregoris, Marco Borra, Elio Biffali, Thomas Bekel, J. Grant Burgess, Richard R. Kirby & Anthony S. Clare. "Construction of an adult barnacle (Balanus amphitrite) cDNA library and selection of reference genes for quantitative RT-PCR studies". BMC Molecular Biology 10: 62. doi:10.1186/1471-2199-10-62

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