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FAQs about Bubble Snails and Headshield Slugs, Suborder Cephalaspidea

Related Articles: Bubble Snails & Headshield Slugs, Sea Slugs, Nudibranchs,

Related FAQs: Seaslugs 1, Seaslugs 2, & FAQs on:  Seaslug Identification, Seaslug Behavior, Seaslug Compatibility, Seaslug Selection, Seaslug Systems, Seaslug Feeding, Seaslug Disease, Seaslug Reproduction, & Marine Snails 1Marine Snails 2Marine Snails 3 Nudibranchs, Nudibranchs 2, Nudibranch Identification, Nudibranch Behavior, Nudibranch Compatibility, Nudibranch Selection, Nudibranch Systems, Nudibranch Feeding, Nudibranch Disease, Nudibranch Reproduction, Berghia Nudibranchs, Snail ID 1, Snail ID 2, Snail ID 3

Chelidonura amoena, E. Indian Ocean to S. China Sea over to Hawaii. Raja Ampat 08.

Chelidonura non-sel. 5/8/2012
Dear Mr. Fenner, Hi, David Huang here with another question. I was thinking of getting a blue velvet Nudibranch for my aquarium, Chelidonura varians,
WWM: Mmm, not a Nudibranch; a Headshield (Sea) Slug
knowing full well that Nudibranchs are hard to keep. I have a plan to buy flatworms online, where I have found a website that sells them, raise the flatworms, and put them in a container inside the tank so that the blue velvet can get at them, about one container of 10 flatworms every three or so days. Do you think that this plan will work? Do you think it may release toxins into the tank? I have looked on WetWebMedia, but there was no specific enough article.
David Huang
WWM: I do think this placement would be problematical. I would not do it.
Bob Fenner

Slug ID: Hydatina zonata - 6/26/10
<Hello, Lynn here today.>
This critter is being sold as a "Bubble Shell Sea Slug."
I'd like to know more about it before I purchase.
A little research here and at the SeaSlugForum.net has me wondering if it's Hydatina physis or Bullina lineata. It doesn't look exactly like either, but there may be something I'm missing entirely. Any ideas?
<Yep, I think it's actually Hydatina zonata, a tropical Indo-West Pacific species which, according to Phil Rudman (of http://www.seaslugforum.net ), is likely one highly variable species with numerous synonyms (e.g. Hydatina albocincta).>
Mostly, I'm concerned about its diet.
<That's understandable and again, a smart move on your part because there is indeed cause for concern. Hydatina spp. are specialized Polychaete/worm feeders that prey on Cirratulids, aka 'hair worms'.>
Would putting this slug in an aquarium condemn it to a slow death because of a selective diet?
<I believe so, yes. That is, unless you could find a continual source of Cirratulids or an acceptable substitute (please see this link: http://www.seaslugforum.net/message/1690 ). For more information regarding these beautiful little snails, please see the following links:
http://www.gastropods.com/3/Shell_983.shtml >
Attached 4 photos.
<Nice, thank you! Hopefully the above information/links will help, but if you have any additional questions or concerns, please let me/us know. Take care, Lynn Z>

Snail ID: Hydatina physis - 3/20/09
Hi again!
<Hi, or should I say bonjour!>
I need your help for a snail identification.
<It's actually a neat little sea slug!>
I sent you a picture...
<Yes indeed, and it's a beaut.>
I'm pretty sure it's not reef safe
<Well, it's a predator alright, but one that feeds exclusively on Cirratulid Polychaetes (aka 'hair-worms') so everything else is safe. As with many sea slugs and Nudibranchs, they're beautiful but difficult to keep long term because of their specialized diets.>
...but can you tell me its name?
<Yep, it's Hydatina physis, a Cephalaspidean sea slug that carries a thin shell around on its back. It's also commonly called variations of the Brown-Lined Paper Bubble or Bubble shell. Please see the following link for more information: http://www.seaslugforum.net/showall.cfm?base=hydaphys >
Thank you very much!
<Thank you for sharing such a terrific photo of a beautiful little creature! Take care, Lynn>

 Gorgeous. RMF

C. varians Hi Bob, I have had a problem with the ubiquitous Planaria a.k.a. flatworms, and have purchased two C. varians to try to combat the problem. I have turned off my power heads until I can get foam filters on them, but am wondering if there could be any critter in my tank that might like a C. varians for lunch. Can you tell me what might "go after" my little flatworm eaters? <Any number of worms of different phyla, crustaceans of size if they're hungry. Where did you get this Chelidonura? Bob Fenner> Thanks, Marty
Re: C. varians
Hi again Bob, Well I do have some small crabs that I bought from GARF. I don't recall what type they are so I have attached a pic. Other than some snails, that's it for sessile inverts <Umm, actually these aren't "sessile"... that is, they live on the bottom, but aren't "attached" to it permanently... so they should be able to keep out of the way> other than what's living in my sand bed. As to where I got them, your friends at FFExpress. They were quite pricey, but if they do the job I'll be happy. <We'll see... Bob Fenner>

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