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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Salted


Just a couple of quick shots of a Salted Dorid (Doriopsilla albopunctata).  Eric spotted this nudibranch (sea slug) in the rocky intertidal zone on Bodega Head on 9 March 2013.  It was a relatively small individual, ~2 cm long.

Note the uniform yellow background coloration and the scattered white spots (hence the common name "salted" and the species name "albopunctata" which means "white-spotted").

You can see the frilly white gills at the posterior or back end (left side of photo) and two orange rhinophores, or chemosensory organs, at the anterior or head end (right side of photo).  This species feeds on sponges.


Salted Dorids appear to be a southern species.  Morris, Abbott, and Haderlie (1980) list their range from Baja California to Van Damme State Park (Mendocino County).  I'd say this species is uncommon on Bodega Head, but let me know if you have a different impression of their local status.

1 comment:

Shilah said...

I have found this same species up here in Mendocino at Mac Kerricher Beach, I never noticed them before, I suspect it might have something to do with the summertime warmer waters.