Phyllidiopsis sphingis Brunckhorst, 1993 (18mm)
OPISTHOBRANCH OF THE WEEK
Opisthobranch of the Week Data
Frequency on Okinawa:
- Order: NUDIBRANCHIA
- Suborder: Doridina
- Family: Phyllidiidae
[brackets indicate range for all Okinawa-collected specimens of the species]
- Individual Collection No: RFB #2418-C
- Location: Horseshoe Cliffs, Okinawa (26o30.0'N, 127o50.9'E) [Horseshoe, Seragaki]
- Date: 5 July, 1990 [Nov '88, Aug '89, Jun '90, Jul '90, May '91(5 individuals), Sep '92, Feb '93, May '94, Jul '96]
- Depth: 175ft (53.3m) [60ft, 80ft, 90ft, 100ft, 110ft, 110ft, 125ft, 140ft, 140ft, 150ft, 150ft, 175ft, 220ft]
- Water temperature at collection depth: Not recorded
- Size: TL 18mm [10mm, 13mm, 13mm, 14mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 16mm, 17mm, 18mm, 18mm, 23mm, 25mm]
- Specimen deposited: RFB Personal Research Collection (different individuals of the species deposited at Cal Acad Sci)
Phyllidiopsis sphingis is considered to be uncommon on Okinawa as I have collected a total of thirteen individuals over a period of many years of diving here. Several additional individuals have been seen and in several instances, U/W photographs were taken, but the animals were not collected.
The featured animal was found crawling in the open on a vertical rock wall covered with miscellaneous cnidaria, bryozoa, and porifera, within a meter of a coral rubble talus slope.
As of mid-July, 2007, the following eight described species of Phyllidiopsis have been featured on the Okinawa Slug Site:
Of the above seven species, only two closely resemble Phyllidiopsis sphingis; P. annae and P. striata, but of the three, P. sphingis is the only one having light colored rhinophores as well as black rays extending from the black lateral bands, toward the edge of the mantle.
Page Date: 15 Jun '98
Page Modification Date: 16 Jul '07
Digitally manipulated photo
Copyright © 2007 Robert F. Bolland