Berthelinia pseudochloris Kay, 1964a
|Maximum size: 8 mm.
This species is strongly laterally compressed (in contrast to the Julia spp.). It has a nearly
transparent yellow-white shell with a curved
dorsal margin and the animal is green, flecked with white.
A variable pattern of blue-white
lines and patches shows through the shell. (Note 1)
is a rare species found in moderately exposed to highly exposed rocky
areas on algae of the genus Caulerpa
on which it feeds. (Note 2) The five animals we've seen were at depths of
1 to 3 m (< 3 to 10 ft). Like some other sacoglossids, it releases a
milky secretion when disturbed.
Maui, Oahu, Kauai and French Frigate Shoals.
It was first recorded in Hawaii from Koloa, Kauai by Allison Kay on
Nov. 25, 1961. (Kay, 1964b)
Photo: CP: 6
mm: found by PF; Honokowai Beach Park, Maui; Oct. 9, 2010.
Observations and comments:
1: Shells of this species show weak to moderate red fluorescence under ultraviolet light (395 nM).
Note 2: On June 13, 2013 we observed a large animal feeding on a small form of Caulerpa racemosa(?) in a holding dish. It had previously ignored a small piece of Caulerpa serrulata.