Family Scalpellidae
Family Lepadidae
Family Verrucidae
Family Chthamalidae
Family Coronulidae
Superfamily BALANOIDEA
Family Tetraclitidae
Family Archaeobalanidae
Family Balanidae
Family Pyrgomatidae
   Species List

Click on the images for the photographs

Solidobalanus fallax                      Megatrema anglicum

Goose Barnacles
Photograph by Graham Etherington

October 2010, Isles of Scilly


News Reports

14 November 2018

Amongst the debris washed ashore on Chesil Beach, Dorset, included Goose Barnacles, Lepas anserifera, Lepas pectinata andLepas hilli, and the rarer pelagic species Concoderma virgatum.

Image Report by Steve Trewhella on Crustacea of the NE Atlantic & NW Europe facebook
& The Essential Guide to Beachcombing and the Strandline
Scalpellum scalpellum28 December 2015
I had an exciting find on Chesil in the morning , the Stalked Barnacle Scalpellum scalpellum, living on the hydroid Nemertesia antennina, or Sea Beard, unlike the other stalked barnacles we are finding attached to flotsam, this species is British, living attached to hydroids on the reefs of Lyme Bay. In 2010 we collected specimens for Danish scientists who were struggling to find the species. It was only because I had found them on the beach that we knew they occurred in Lyme Bay, diving at 30 meters on hydroid covered reefs paid off.
Image Report by Steve Trewhella on Crustacea of the NE Atlantic & NW Europe facebook
November - December 2015

Thousands of clumps of Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, attached to floating objects have been washed ashore all along the south coast from Cornwall to Kent. Those strandings occur very year, but it seems that more than the usual number were discovered this winter. Diligent beachcombers have discovered the tiny Columbus Crabs, Planes minutus. amongst the wrecks, as well as few of the other pelagic Goose Barnacles like Lepas anserifera.
Stalked Barnacles on Aphotomarine (by Dave Fenwick)
Barnacles at Aphotomarine

27 November 2015

Goose Barnacles on Space Rocket
Photograph by Tresco Boatman

A large part of a space rocket floated across the Atlantic Ocean from Florida and acquired a large colony of Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, on its one year journey. It eventually beached on Tresco, Isles of Scilly, with the assistance of local fishermen..

Report by David Hamilton on facebook
BBC News Report

9 November 2014
The pelagic Striped Goose Barnacle, Conchoderma virgatum, was spotted washed ashore on the Dorset coast. This is only the second known and recorded discovery of this species on the English coast.

Report by Steve Trewhella on Beachcombing (British Isles) facebook
Crustacea of NE Atlantic facebook
22 October 2013
Another fishbox found at Marazion, south Cornwall, had a liberal covering of the live stalked barnacle Lepas pectinata. I find quite a lot of these and they're a very common find at the right time of the year, and can be found on many types of objects washed ashore, from macroalgae, feathers, bottles, margarine containers and workman's helmets. The species is quite variable in its sculpturing and is noted to be white or bluish. Indeed a few of the specimens on the fishbox had a bluish sheen, and it's the first time I've seen this.
Report by David Fenwick Snr on Porcupine Society  facebook

15 December 2011
An interesting large piece of wood was washed up on the strandline at after storms on low tide at Sennen Cove, Cornwall: it was completely covered in small to medium sized Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera.

On closer examination it was found to have a cavity at one end and tucked into this was a male and a female Columbus Crab, Planes minutus. Small 3-4 mm egg masses and shipworm holes were also seen which included the rarely recorded Bankia gouldi; as well as Teredora malleolus, which made up about 95% of the shipworms in the timber. Under a magnifying glass and discovered a rare 14 mm pelagic sea slug, Fiona pinnata, which has only been recorded a few times in British seas.

Report and Photographs ©  by David Fenwick Snr. (Aphotomarine)
Full Report
BMLSS Molluscs
BMLSS Nudibranchs

10 October 2011

Goose Barnacles washed up at Constantine Bay, near Padstow, Cornwall
Photographs by Dave Emott

8 October 2011
I  found three Portuguese Man-o'-War, Physalia physalis, loads of By-the-Wind Sailors, Velella velella, Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, and Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, at Sennen Cove and Gwynver Beach, Cornwall.

Report by Jo on the Cornish Wildlife Yahoo Group
BMLSS Strandline Page

18 September 2011
Lots of Buoy Barnacles, Dosima faciculalaria, now turning up at Sennen Cove, Cornwall, on feathers, string and more commonly Egg Wrack, Ascophyllum nodosum. Also on the Egg Wrack is plenty of Lepas pectinatus, sometimes both species together. One or two old Lepas anatifera and a few large By the Wind Sailors, Velella, also found today.

Report by Dave Fenwick on the Cornish Wildlife YahooGroup

10 May 2011
Two rarely recorded warm water species of barnacle have been discovered on fishing pots tackle off the coast of Guernsey in the Channel Islands. The Stalked Barnacle, Scalpellum scalpellum, was last recorded in 1862 although a specimen was found in 2003. The other species was an Acorn Barnacle, Solidobalanus fallax, (identified by Dr. Paul Chambers from Jersey) which was previously recorded off Plymouth.

Full Report and Photographs by Richard Lord on Sustainable Guernsey
Sealord Photography

27 November 2010
Yet more Stalked Barnacles today found east of Marazion, Cornwall, three lots; Lepas pectinata was found on a bucket ''Made in Canada''. The most unusual find was Lepas pectinata along with Sea Lettuce in a small M&S margarine container.

Report by Dave Fenwick on Facebook (Strandlines and Beachcombing)

19 November 2010
Yet more Stalked Barnacles found today at Long Rock, Penzance, this time Lepas pectinata and Lepas anatifera on a miniature whisky bottle. Sadly the bottle was empty. A solitary mature By the Wind Sailor was also found.

Report by Dave Fenwick on Facebook (Strandlines and Beachcombing)
3 November 2010

At least three species of Stalked Barnacles, Lepas hilli, Lepas pectinata and Lepas anatifera were discovered on the high tide mark at Long Rock, Penzance, Cornwall. Strong south-westerly winds had washed ashore a large plastic lid that the animals were attached to. 

This is a pelagic tropical-sub-tropical species that is blown to the UK shores on flotsam via the Gulf Stream. British seas are too cold for these species to survive and breed.

Report and Photograph by Dave Fenwick
Stalked Barnacles on Aphotomarine (by Dave Fenwick)
Barnacles at Aphotomarine
Lepas pectinata
Strandlines and Beachcombing on Facebook
> 24 December 2009
Strong south-westerly winds have blown many organisms on to Dorset beaches including the unusual pelagic Striped Goose Barnacle, Conchoderma virgatum.
BBC Dorset News Report
BMLSS Strandline Reports

Photographby Steve Trewhella (facebook)

November 2009
Six species of barnacles were found in a week of sightings at Chesil Beach, Dorset: 
Buoy Barnacle Dosima faciculalaria
Scalpellum scalpellum
Four species of Stalked Barnacles; Lepas anserifera, Lepas hilli, Lepas pectinata and Lepas anatifera

MARLin Recording Blog for November 2009
28 October 2009

Commercial crab and lobster fisherman Clive Brown found what looked like a block of wood covered in Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, floating off the south coast of Guernsey. When he retrieved the bulky mass of Goose Barnacles he found they were covering a piece of communication equipment

The image shows the equipment after 20 kg of the Goose Barnacles had been removed. Four Columbus Crabs, Planes minutus, were also discovered.

Report & Photograph by Richard Lord (Guernsey)
on the Channel Islands Environment Email List

Sealord Photography

Photograph by Michele Legg 20 September 2008
These large acorn barnacles were seen on rocks along side the Newhaven Harbour Arm, East Sussex. I think they are Balanus perforatus. This is a southern species that is found on the coasts of Devon and Cornwall and not usually recorded east of the Isle of Wight. 
Report by Dr Gerald Legg  (Booth Museum)

June 2007

What is this strange animal found on Wembury beach, near Plymouth,
in ?
Photograph by Deborah Latham

Buoy Barnacle, Dosima fascicularis.
ID by Emma Rance
on the Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Yahoo Group

17 December 2006
Several hundred Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, were washed up near River Road, Littlehampton, Sussex, after the gales, some attached to chunks of expanding foam (could be Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis?), others on pallet and lengths of rope.

Report by Hugh Neve

9 December 2006
In excess of 200 Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, were attached to a wooden pallet washed up at Wembury (near Plymouth), Devon, by the recent storms and they ranged in size from 5 mm to 20 mm.

Photograph and Report by Steve
29 November 2006
About a hundred small Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, were seen washed up attached to a broken plastic fish box on the strandline of Shoreham Beach (Ferry  Road access) after the recent southerly gales.
Goose Barnacles
This is the first time I have seen them washed at Shoreham in over 25 years, but I expect they have been washed up and unrecorded before on frequent occasions.
There were the usual millions of Slipper Limpet shells, frequent Whelk and Mussel shells, seaweed and cuttlebones etc.
Marine Life of Sussex

13 - 14 August 2006

Buoy Barnacles on White Park Bay beach (north Antrim)
Photograph by Dave Harrison

Large numbers of Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, were found stranded on the north coast beaches of Northern Ireland, e.g. Portstewart Strand and White Park Bay (County Antrim). There were at least six of these batches seen on the White Park Bay beach during the walk

Report by Annika Mitchell (Queen's University of Belfast)
on the Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Group
and Dave Harrison on the on the flickr British Marine Life Gallery

Buoy Barnacles are attached to floats that they had secreted that have a texture like that of expanding foam.

3 - 7 August 2006

Bouy Barnacles (Photograph by Alison)

Buoy Barnacles from Connemara
Photograph by Alison

Thousands of the stalked Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, are washed ashore on the beaches of Connemara, County Galway, south-west Ireland. They were stranded all along the west coast of Ireland.

Report and Photograph by Alison
BMLSS Barnacles

August 2004
A float of Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, are washed up on the north coast of Ireland.
Link to Photograph

Report by Stuart Dunlop on the UK Wildlife (Yahoo Group)
Donegal Wildlife 2005

30 October 2004
"We live on the shore in the south-east corner of Hayling Island in Hampshire, and have recently had spring tides and southerly winds, resulting in much debris being washed above normal high water mark. This morning I found a plastic jug (seven inches long  with an aperture at the top of around four inches), and growing from the inside (and apparently filling it)  is a most peculiar creature. From the top of the jug protrude more than a dozen slimy and  jelly-like tentacles of dark colour and about half an inch in circumference. They all appear to emanate from a central body, which is obscured by the jug. Each of the slightly tapering  tentacles is up to six inches long, and  disappears into its own half-opened shell, which is stone grey and flattish and of irregular dimensions with a narrow ochre stripe on it. The shells are almost oblong or rhomboid in shape and no more than an inch or so long. When I found  the jug and creature at high water mark, I noticed that the tentacles were stirring as if it were still alive, so brought it home and have placed it in a bucket of seawater in the yard.
Photograph by George East Photograph by George East

                                                  Goose Barnacles

In the bucket, the smaller shells are opening and allowing a feathery set of fronds to come out and then retract as if the creature is either breathing or feeding."

Report and Photographs by George East

9 October 2004
A visit to three shores in northern Cornwall brought the first report of a Violet Snail, Janthina janthina, with the recent spate of By-the-wind Sailors, Velella velella, strandings. Two shells, one alive and one dead, discovered by Julie Hatcher (Kimmeridge Bay Marine Nature Reserve) on Widemouth Bay beach, near Bude. The strandline was covered in the white skeleton shells of Velella several centimetres thick.
Not only the shell but the soft body of the Violet Snail is also a violet colour. This gastropod feeds of on Velella and secretes a mucus bubble-raft to keep in buoyant. Another animal (a crustacean) that secretes a polystyrene-like raft to keep it afloat is the Buoy Barnacle, Dosima fascicularis, which were present in their hundreds and were still be swept in on to the beach to strand and die. These were more numerous than at least two species of Goose Barnacles, the commonest was Lepas anatifera and the other smaller one washed up was the Duck Barnacle, Lepas pectinata. These two barnacles are always attached to floating debris and are not pelagic, but sessile animals when adult and they become stranded on the shore when the object they attach themselves to becomes dislodged and floats away.

Report by Steve Trewhella

21 September 2004
A mass stranding of By-the-wind Sailors, Velella velella, occurred on the Cornish coast at Porthcothan, Treyarnon, Constantine and other places from Sennen Cove (near Land's End) to Padstow. The Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, started coming in on the same tide as the Velella. I've seen with my own eyes on Porthcothan (SW 8572), Treyarnon and Constantine and Paul Gainey saw them on Gwithian, all in north Cornwall.  I'd be very surprised if they weren't all the way up the coast and I'd number them in millions, all big. The Goose Barnacles are occurring in their usual quantity for this time of the year, if anything, less. To give you an idea, on my beach, Pothcothan, 25 acres at low tide: Velella approximately. one million, Buoy Barnacles: 2000+, Goose Barnacle colonies: 7.

Report by Nick Darke via the Cornish Mailing List
Buoy Barnacle, Dosima fascicularis

Photograph © Richard Lord (Guernsey)

Photograph  ©   Richard Lord

The Buoy Barnacles were attached to floats that they had secreted that have a texture like that of expanding foam.

Comment by Clare Mullen on the
Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Group

Goose Barnacles, Lepas, washed up on Constantine Beach, near Padstow, Cornwall.
Photograph by Amanda Bertuchi

13 January 2003
Green Turtle found on Guernsey 1/2003 (Photograph © by Richard Lord, Guernsey)A live Green TurtleChelonia mydas, was landed on the west coast of Guernsey (Channel Islands) in the afternoon.
 Geoff George and Yvonne Chauvel discovered the turtle on Saline Beach. The Green Turtle has been treated by the States of Guernsey veterinarian and transferred to the Guernsey Aquarium at St. Peter Port.

The white spots are a species of turtle barnacle, which may have not been recorded before on the British list of marine (barnacle) species (MCS Directory). It could be the species Chelonibia testudinaria, but this is only an educated guess.

Report from Richard Lord (Guernsey)
Full Report
BMLSS Turtles

Barnacle on the Green Turtle found on Guernsey 1/2003 (Photograph © by Richard Lord, Guernsey)
11 December 2002
Taking up this theme of the wildlife that surrounds us, but which is terra incognito to most of us amateur naturalists, Barry Collins (wildlife warden for Thorney Island) contributes an apt example from his observation of a marker post recently washed up on the Pilsey Sands in Chichester Harbour, Sussex. The section of the post which had for years been under water was covered with a thousand Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, looking like silvery grey mussel shells around 5 cm (2 inches) long, each attached to the post by a long flexible brown stem which may be 20 cm (8 inches) long allowing the living crustacean to reach out into the surrounding water to feed.

Report on Ralph Hollin's Nature Notes
NB: On previous occasions, local buoys thought to have provided habitats for Lepas have discovered to be buoys from much further afield, e.g. meteorological buoys from the Atlantic Ocean.
Discussion (Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Group)
9 August 2002
The report of an animal washed up at at Roseisle, near Burghead, Scotland, was bafflingly described as "a large body, measuring 2 by 3½ feet, and hundreds of legs everywhere" and "had loads of beaks like a puffin and every time he poured water over the creature, the beaks opened!". It was a colony of Goose Barnacles.
Report by Dr Kevin Robinson

19 June 2002
Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, are washed up on a plank at Borth-y-Gêst, near Porthmadog, north Wales (Tremadoc Bay, north bit of Cardigan Bay), and these attracted the curiosity of the public.

Report by William Galvin (RSPCA)
Photographs by Jim HallPhotographs by Jim HallPhotographs by Jim Hall
12 February 2002
After a few days of gales, I discovered my first Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, on the Gower peninsular, south Wales, storm shore at Llangenith, after 25 years of searching the strandline. These are the barnacles in the photograph on the right and they varied  in length rom 25 mm length down to small baby ones of 5 mm - 8 mm.
Report by Jim Hall (Swansea)
4 November 2001
Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, attached by whitish stalks were washed ashore at Lannacombe Beach, between Prawle Point and Start Point, South Devon. They were attached to each other rather an external piece of flotsam, so they had been dislodged from their original attachment.
Report from Doug Herdson (National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth)
via the Marine Mammals of the English Channel Smart Group
September 2001
Report of large log washed up at the entrance to the Len Trench, on the north west coast of the Isle of Man, covered in Goose Neck barnacles, probably Lepas anatifera.
Report by Mike Bates (Port Erin Marine Lab)
October 2001
I was on Hastings beach, East Sussex, and there were some Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, washed up. They were still alive and attached to a bit of broken float.
Report by Mike Cook (Wye, Kent)
16 September 2001
On Fistral Beach, Newquay, Cornwall, Matthew Slater found an exceptionally large cluster of Buoy Barnacles, Dosima fascicularis, (=Lepas),  The group measured 30 cm across and all the individuals were alive The cluster can now be seen floating in the Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay  The northerly and north-west winds are likely to  bring ashore more  members of the  warm-water, open sea community - so watch out!

Stella Turk
This message has been passed on from the Cornish Mailing List

12 September 2000
Thought you would be interested in this feedback of this morning: Anna and Peter Mason of 36 Primrose Way, Seaton, Devon spotted our Goose Barnacles in the Centre and on realising what they were dashed off to retrieve some more they had seen on Seaton Beach this morning (11 am). They have been put in one of our tanks, but we have to date never seen so
many on one buoy (see attached photo). Most are in good condition and are now filtering. (We have managed to feed the others by hand with half a cockle - this is going to take forever!)
We have had SW prevailing winds all week after the huge gales. We estimate there are 300 barnacles on the buoy and this is not a recognised British type fender, as noted before. Tiny barnacles are also present.

Best Wishes
Sea Discovery Centre-Axmouth
12 September 2000

Goose Barnacles (Photograph by Jenny Nunn)
September 2000
Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, were washed up between Seaton and Axmouth, in Lyme Bay, Dorset, on fenders from an American boat, so they may have drifted all the way across the Atlantic Ocean.

Report by Jenny Nunn (Axmouth Sea Discovery Centre)
September 2000
Chris Hicks (Norfolk) discovered a piece of Teredo-riddled timber with Goose Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, attached on the strandline at Brightstone Bay, Isle of Wight.
Mon, 2 Oct 2000 09:13:02 +0100

   From: "nick darke" <>
Subject: Re: Goose Barnacles 2000

Hi Andy,
We get Goose Barnacles (Lepas anatifera) washing in on drift regularly, and a week or two back we found several score Buoy Barnacles (Lepas fascicularis) washed in at Porthcothan, Cornwall WT has the details)
Best Wishes,
Nick Darke

 Date: Tue, 3 Oct 2000 10:03:39 +0100
   From: "nick darke" <>
Subject: Portuguese Men o'War etc.

Hi Vince,
Just to report two Portuguese Men o'War at Watergate & Mawgan Porth (one on each beach) today 3/10/00

Also, a Manx Shearwater, dead, clean, fresh, Watergate 3/10/00

Also, many Buoy Barnacles, and literally thousands of By-the-wind Sailors Velella, on Porthcothan but none on Watergate and Mawgan Porth. I've always thought of these as predominantly south-westerly strandings, Porthcothan is a NW facing beach, and our recent gale was NW.

Nick Darke

Report on Vince Smith's One-List/Cornish Wildlife

Hello Andy,

I have not heard of any Goose Barnacles being washed up lately, but you may be interested to know that I found a single specimen of Pollicipes pollicipes below the cliff at Carn Les Boel near Land's End SW 356232, several years ago, I understood at the time that the last previous sighting on this side of the channel was in 1880. I am in no condition to climb down there now, so do not know if there are any there at this time.  I could e-mail you a picture of it that I took so many years ago
if you are interested,
 Ray Dennis

Date: Mon Oct 2, 2000 2:30pm
Subject: Re: Goose Barnacles 2000

Still in Isles of Scilly mode I'm afraid!

We saw a fair few Goose Barnacles washed up on the sandbar between St. Agnes and Gugh.

8 October 2000

On Perranporth Beach, Cornwall, Paul Gainey found a large coconut, still with its outer husk, as well as Buoy Barnacles (Lepas fascicularis) and By-the-Wind Sailors (Velella velella).

Stella Turk
Report on Vince Smith's One-List/Cornish Wildlife
These Cornish Environmental eForum pages contain many Goose and Buoy Barnacle reports.
See also:
Cornish Marine Life Records (Ray Dennis) 1999


Chthamalus stellatus
Chthamalus montagui
Semibalanus balanoides
Elminius modestus
Balanus crenatus
Balanus improvisus
Balanus perforatus

Field Studies Council Publications



Mitella Oken, 1815
Mitella pollicipes (Gmelin, 1789)
Scalpellum Leach, 1817
Scalpellum kempi Annandale, 1911
Scalpellum scalpellum (Linnaeus, 1758)
Scalpellum velutinum Hoek, 1883
Alepas Sander Rang, 1829
Alepas parasita Sander Rang, 1829
Anelasma Darwin, 1851
Anelasma squalicola (Lovén, 1844)
Conchoderma Olfers, 1814
Conchoderma auritum (Linnaeus, 1758)
Conchoderma virgatum (Spengler, 1790)
Lepas Linnaeus, 1758
Lepas anatifera Linnaeus, 1758
Lepas anserifera Linnaeus, 1758
Dosima fascicularis Ellis & Solander, 1786
Lepas hilli (Leach, 1818)
Lepas pectinata Spengler, 1793


Verruca Schumacher, 1817
Verruca stroemia (O F Müller, 1776)



Chthamalus Ranzani, 1820
Chthamalus montagui Southward, 1976


Coronula Lamarck, 1802
Coronula diadema (Linnaeus, 1758)
Coronula reginae Darwin, 1854
Platylepas J E Gray, 1825
Platylepas hexastylos (O. Fabricius, 1798)
See O"Riordan (1979).
Stomatolepas Pilsbry, 1910
Stomatolepas elegans (Costa, 1838)
See Smaldon & Lyster (1976).
Xenobalanus Steenstrup, 1851
Xenobalanus globicipitis Steenstrup, 1851

Superfamily BALANOIDEA

Acasta Leach, 1817
Acasta spongites (Poli, 1791)

Chirona J E Gray, 1835
Chirona amaryllis (Darwin, 1854)
Chirona hameri (Ascanius, 1767)
Elminius Leach, 1825
Elminius modestus Darwin, 1854
Semibalanus Pilsbry, 1916
Semibalanus balanoides (Linnaeus, 1758)
Solidobalanus Hoek, 1913
Solidobalanus fallax Broch, 1927
See Southward (1995).

Balanus Costa, 1778
Balanus amphitrite Darwin, 1854
Balanus balanus (Linnaeus, 1758)
Balanus crenatus Brugière, 1789
Balanus improvisus Darwin, 1854
Balanus perforatus Brugière, 1789
Balanus spongicola Brown, 1827
Megabalanus Hoek, 1913
Megabalanus tintinnabulum (Linnaeus, 1758)
Balanus amphitrite
Balanus perforatus

Boscia Ferussac, 1822
Boscia anglica (Sowerby, 1823)

Ross et al. (2003) A key for the identification of the Nauplii of common barnacles of the British Isles, with emphasis on Chthamalus.  Journal of Crustacean Biology. Volume 23. Pages 328-340."

Parasitic barnacle Sacculina carcini

Six species of Barnacle at Chesil (MarLIN)

Barnacles for Dinner discussion

Crustacean EBiota of Cetaceans (notes only)

Barnacles (notes)

Barnacles become toxic to repel hungry predators

Guide to British Barnacles

Geographic distribution and description of four pelagic barnacles along the south east Pacific coast of Chile - a zoogeographical approximation

Use these links if your are familiar with the scientific classifications of marine life
British Marine Life Study Society Crustacean Page
News 2020
News 2018
Main Links
Membership Form
Top of the Page