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Saturday, June 6, 2015

A few tips

Once again, Eric's sharp eyes spotted an interesting nudibranch.  This is the first time we've seen this species in the Bodega Bay area.

Before we got a close-up view, we could see the tiny black spots, which made it look like the nudibranch had been sprinkled with black pepper.  This individual was ~10 mm long with its foot extended.

Although the northern range limit of Black-tipped Spiny Dorids (Acanthodoris rhodoceras) is Cape Arago in Oregon, it appears that this species is uncommon north of San Francisco.

Here's a closer view of the tall rhinophores (sensory organs) and the black-tipped papillae:

Eric captured some very nice video of this wonderful nudibranch.  Here are a few "tips" regarding what to watch for: (1) close-ups of those fabulous black-tipped papillae, (2) the heart beating where there's brown coloration in the center of the nudibranch, and (3) the circle of gill plumes near the back end.  [Click on the title of the video below the viewer to see a higher resolution version.]


John W. Wall said...

Another great find and video!

Jackie Sones said...

Thanks, John! It's been a great year for nudibranchs -- and we'll be keeping our eyes open for more! You don't get warm-water years like we had in 2014/early 2015 often, so it's worth taking some time to look carefully for interesting southern species.