All known species of the sponge family Chalinidae (Demospongiae, Haplosclerida) occurring in the shallower part of the Caribbean are described and taxonomically revised. The study is the result of collecting activities of the author and others throughout the Caribbean, and examination of type and other material in musea and institutes. In a previous revision of north-eastern Atlantic Chalinidae (De Weerdt, 1986, 1989), the family was subdivided into eight monophyletic species groups, with various states of the skeletal architecture as main synapomorphous (shared derived) characters. After examination of all available type species of the nominal genera of the family, the species groups are now given proper names, replacing the tentative names in the earlier publications. These are the genus Haliclona Grant, 1835, with the nominotypical subgenus Haliclona for the ‘oculata’ group, subgenus Reniera Schmidt, 1862 for the ‘aquaeductus’ group, subgenus Soestella n. subg. for the ‘arenata’ group, subgenus Halichoclona De Laubenfels, 1932 for the ‘fistulosa’ group, subgenus Rhizoniera Griessinger, 1971 for the ‘rosea’ group, subgenus Gellius Gray, 1867 for the ‘angulata’ group, the genus Chalinula Schmidt, 1868 for the ‘Acervochalina’ group, and genus Dendroxea Griessinger, 1971 for the ‘Dendroxea’ group. Twenty-three valid shallow-water species are recognized, seven of which are here described as new: Haliclona (Reniera) ruetzleri n.sp., Haliclona (Soestella) lehnerti n.sp., Haliclona (Soestella) luciensis n.sp., Haliclona (Soestella) smithae n.sp., Haliclona (Soestella) vermeuleni n.sp., Haliclona (Halichoclona) stoneae n.sp., and Chalinula zeae n.sp.

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Naturalis journals & series

de Weerdt, W. H. (2000). A monograph of the shallow-water Chalinidae (Porifera, Haplosclerida) of the Caribbean. Beaufortia, 50(1), 1–67.