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Velutinid Addendum

The velutinids are prosobranch gastropods that aren't closely related to the heterobranchia. So, they're technically outside the scope of this site. However, they are also the prosobranchs most commonly mistaken for sea slugs and there is little information on them available on-line. So, we've decided to add an addendum covering the Hawaiian species.

The following information is based primarily on Kay, 1979 and whatever we've been able to pick up on-line. Unlike the opisthobranchs, we haven't kept extensive notes on this family--no running log of finds or detailed records of the source of photographed animals. So, we can't guarantee that it includes the latest names and it may not be as comprehensive as the opisthobranch section.

Velutinidae
Velutinids are prosobranch gastropods of the  family Velutinidae (sometimes referred to as the Lamellariidae). They have an internal shell that is covered by the mantle (which is often elaborately colored or ornamented). They are frequently mistaken for dorid nudibranchs or pleurobranchids but  may be distinguished from both groups by their unrolled cephalic tentacles that emerge from beneath the mantle and have bulbous eye spots at their bases. In contrast, dorids have rhinophores emerging from the top of the mantle and pleurobranchids have rolled rhinophores that emerge from beneath the mantle. They feed on colonial tunicates and are often very cryptic when seen on their hosts. Many velutinids are also highly variable in color and/or texture making identification difficult. There are probably about twelve species known from Hawaii in, perhaps, four genera: Coriocella, Lamellaria, Marsenina and Marseniopsis.

Coriocella nigra

Lamellaria sp. #1

Lamellaria sp. #2

Lamellaria sp. #3





Lamellaria(?) sp. #4

Lamellaria sp. #5

Lamellaria sp. #6

Lamellaria sp. #7





Marsenina(?) sp. #1

Marseniopsis sp. #1
no photo
available
Marseniopsis sp. #2

un. sp. #7
 
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