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FAQs about Sea Slugs, the Opisthobranchs, Identification 3

Related Articles: Sea Slugs, Nudibranchs,

Related FAQs: Seaslug Identification 1, Seaslug ID 2, Seaslug ID 4, Seaslug ID , Seaslugs 1, Seaslugs 2, & FAQs on: Seaslug Behavior, Seaslug Compatibility, Seaslug Selection, Seaslug Systems, Seaslug Feeding, Seaslug Disease, Seaslug Reproduction, & Marine Snails 1, Marine Snails 2, Marine 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,

Nudibranch ID..Please? Blue-Ring Sea Hare 5/15/09
Hello again WWM Crew,
<Hello again, Sandra - Lynn here again too!>
I found a Nudibranch in my quarantine tank on a small colony of Palyzoas that I have not been able to identify.
<It does look like a Nudibranch, doesn't it? It fooled me too, at first! Its instead a harmless species of Sea Hare (family Aplysiidae) called Stylocheilus striatus, a common circum-tropical slug that happens to eat blue green algae (yay!) and only reaches about 65mm (roughly 2.5") in length. One of its common names is the Blue-ring Sea Hare which is most appropriate considering the color form that your individual displays. For more information, please see the following link: http://www.seaslugforum.net/showall.cfm?base=stylstri >
It's not like most of the Zoanthid eating Nudibranchs I have ever found.
I have looked at the Sea Slug Forum, WWM and several others with pictures and with the thousands of Nudibranchs in existence, I just can't find one that looks just like it.
<Believe me, I feel your pain. As much as Id love to say that I knew what that little guy was right away, I sure didn't. I saw what I thought were gills on the back and went completely off course! I must have looked at ten zillion photos of Nudibranchs before I finally backtracked and looked at the Aplysiids! I just know Im going to be dreaming of sea slugs chasing me tonight!>
I'm attaching 2 pictures that I narrowed down from about 50.
<Heee! You sound like me! Hey, its always better to have too many photos, than too few.>
It's not easy taking pictures of a moving quarter inch long Nudibranch.
<No kidding, you did a great job!>
His body pattern looks like brown on white tree bark and it has electric blue spots surrounded by a yellow-orange spot.
<Its definitely a beautiful little creature.>
If you know what this little guy is, do you know what his egg case looks like
<This species leaves strands of eggs. See the photo at the above link.>
..and their incubation period so I know how long to keep the Palyzoas in quarantine.
<No worries with this little guy.>
Most Zoa eating Nudis have a "C" shaped white and clear egg case and I haven't found any like that in this quarantine tank.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. You guys are awesome.
<Why thank you!>
Thank you,
<You're very welcome. Take care, LynnZ>

Re: Nudibranch ID..Please? Blue-Ring Sea Hare 5/15/09
Thanks a bunch, Lynn, for both ID emails today, the sea hare and the olive snail.
<Youre most welcome!>
I was looking at pictures of the sea hare and thought it kind of looked like one but like you said, it sure did look like gills on the back. And I even looked at him under my microscope.
<I bet that was neat.>
If I hadn't thought those were gills on his back I probably would have found him right away.
<Yep, I know the feeling.>
He doesn't seem as "hairy" as most of the sea hares I have seen, either. On the Olive Snail, that was my second thought. But I have never seen one so big before.
<I haven't either not alive, anyway.>
All of the olive snails I have ever seen have been less than an inch. You had asked his possible origin and this tank was set up with live rock from both Fiji and Indonesia and it's only been up for about 6 months. I inspect and quarantine all of the corals and other critters before they go near the tank
and being that large it's probably safe to assume that he came in on the live rock.
He must have been stuck in a hole.
<That would be my guess as well - or within a crevice.>
I am going to keep him in either the mantis tank or my quarantine tank. It took me over a month to catch him this last time so I don't want to take any chances of him deciding to find my snails or other critters appetizing.
<I dont blame you. Its definitely the safe thing to do, especially since he's so hard to find/catch.>
The mantis is a spearer that clicks from his back end and not the front.
He came in live rock in my soft coral tank and it took 4 months to finally catch him.
<I bet that was fun! They can be a real challenge to catch.>
He's been in a separate tank for about 3 or 4 weeks now but I haven't seen him eat anything in this tank. In the soft coral tank he ate daily. Unfortunately, he started out eating gobies and my clown fish before I discovered him.
<Uh-oh. Thats not the way you want to find out you've got a Mantis.>
But after that he would eat krill, silver sides, brine shrimp, Mysis shrimp, crab meat, clams and prawn from a skewer or tweezers. But since he has been in a tank of his own, I haven't seen him eat anything. He won't take anything off the skewer anymore. Maybe he's lonely now.
<Hmmm, Im not sure what's up with that. As long as the water parameters are fine and he's got sufficient sand/rubble/rock to set up his lair, he should be okay. Are you leaving any of the food behind for him? If so, perhaps he comes out when you're not around or at night at nabs it then.>
Well he has the olive snail now to keep him company. He is gorgeous, though. But definitely not photogenic. He's unlike any mantis I have ever had. He loves the light. Shine a flashlight and he follows it.
<Heee! I have a dog like that!>
Maybe he thinks he needs his own reality TV show. Why not? Everybody else has one, why not Max, too?
<Indeed! Sometime when you have a chance, look up The Continuing Adventures of Tim (Supermantis) on the net. Its a hilarious tale of a one-eyed Mantis shrimp.>
Thanks for your help, Lynn. I really appreciate it. Even in 20 years of keeping reefs you learn something new every day.
<Yep, and that's what makes it so much fun! Just think how boring life would be if there was nothing left to learn!>
<Take care, LynnZ>

Not sure of this species and cannot locate it in any library or online.
Creature ID: Sea Hare 4/15/09

Hello my name is Marshall Feather
<Hello Marshall, Lynn here today.>
..and I have been looking on-line and at the University of Georgia Library and cannot find any species that matches or comes close to this one I took a picture of. I first thought of a Red Spanish Dancer but the two move totally different and the Dancer does not carry a hump-like feature on its back. I first saw one and then the next day I saw a school of these. When I got a little closer to take pictures of its underside it shot out a black ink.
<Heee! Its that human again swim for your lives! What you saw were Sea Hares, herbivorous sea slugs in the family Aplysiidae, reacting to a perceived threat. The species is most likely Aplysia braziliana (color and pattern vary), but there are other possibilities as well. Please see the link below for a list. Simply enter Florida in the search box, then go to the Family drop down menu below and select Aplysiidae: http://www.seaslugforum.net/search_species.cfm
More links/information below:
Aplysia braziliana (also see associated links at the bottom of the page): http://www.seaslugforum.net/factsheet.cfm?base=aplybras
Sea Hare ink: http://www.seaslugforum.net/factsheet.cfm?base=seahatac >
<Take care, LynnZ>

Snail ID: Hydatina physis - 3/20/09
Hi again!
<Hi, or should I say bonjour!>
I need your help for a snail identification.
<Its actually a neat little sea slug!>
I sent you a picture...
<Yes indeed, and its a beaut.>
I'm pretty sure it's not reef safe
<Well, its 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, its Hydatina physis, a Cephalaspidean sea slug that carries a thin shell around on its back. Its 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

Lettuce Nudibranch 03/07/09 Hello all (ONCE again) <Monique> I have been searching for the past 4 days to figure out an answer to one specific question, I hope you know that I try using all the resources available to me first, if no avail then I try you guys... <Ok> Here is the deal: I recently purchased a "lettuce Nudibranch" (please see attached picture) at one of our LFS. Its now been about 4 weeks and has laid a egg coil (from what I've read online that's what it is). <Yes> What I've read states that the are hermaphroditic, and as such can fertilize their own eggs (though not typical). <But might well have done the "genetic material swap thing" before your, the store's acquisition... can store sperm> As we only have one, and are not sure of the exact species, we were wondering if just ANY two "lettuce Nudibranch" can reproduce offspring? <Mmm, not across species as far as I'm aware> Or do they have to be the EXACT SAME kind, to reproduce? <Maybe posit this query with BillR at SeaSlugForum... http://www.seaslugforum.net/> There is nothing that I have found that has answered my questions, I was even on the SEA SLUG forums looking around regarding my issue. <Oh! A superlative site> See we would like to get another to see if the eggs would hatch and have offspring, <Mmm... a worthwhile speculation... poss. goal... but not easily done by home hobbyists... do investigate these animals early life histories...> however we aren't even sure of the "type" of lettuce Nudibranch we have. I'm thinking its ELYSIA CRISPATA?? <Might be. Again, send the pic to SSF: http://www.seaslugforum.net/display.cfm?id=11846> , and of course like always the LFS is absolutely NO help. When I went in there they told me "we don't know because we don't sell those 'things' here". Which was of course frustrating as I just purchased mine from that exact store about a month ago!!!! Any help would be GREAT! Thanks for you time! And again all the help! ~M
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Friend David Behrens new Nudibranch title announcement/offer. 2/23/09

& The California Academy of Sciences


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Slug found...possibly some type of Oxynoe? 2/20/09 Hi Crew....yes it's me again *shudder* =) So my wife was bored and looking at my planted refugium when she found these "snails" and decided to try and take some pics. I did as much as I could trying to track them down, and I think I found the genus, that being: Oxynoe. I am having a time trying to track down the species, though the Caulerpa I have came from Florida (living in the frigid north of Minnesota and all, not so easy to find) and I would say it's a good probability it is indigenous to that region *wink*, but I haven't found much on those specific ones. Can you enlighten me on the species? <Mmm... can you send along some images? Maybe this is O. antillarum: http://www.seaslugforum.net/showall.cfm?base=oxynanti> Anyway I think it's pretty neat, and from what I have been reading is herbivorous and pretty harmless....unless you are a Caulerpa =). So am I right on this one? *crosses fingers* Thanks crew!! Justin <Bob Fenner>

Re: Slug found...possibly some type of Oxynoe? 2/20/09 Bob, Sorry about that, I thought I attached the image to it....doh! Well here ya go =) ( they are pretty tiny about 1/4" long, so getting a good shot is difficult without a macro lens for the camera) Justin <Ah! Does look like that Sacoglossan last mentioned. BobF>

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