young, 8 mm
Dendrodoris carbunculosa (Kelaart, 1858)
|Maximum size: 250 mm (Tina
Owens, Sea Slug Forum).
a broad, firm species with clusters of prominent, irregular
tubercles on the notum. The central tubercle in each cluster is usually
circled by a single irregular ring of smaller tubercles. It is light
violet-brown and may have dark brown patches between the
clusters of tubercles. Irregular lighter patches may occasionally be
present on the notum. In young animals, the tubercles are less complex
and are separated by more prominent dark brown or black pigment. It can
be distinguished from Dendrodoris
tuberculosa by its opaque notum, less elaborate tubercles
and lack of white spots on its underside.
is a moderately rare species on Maui but appears to be moderately common on Oahu
and the Big Island based on reports by Scott Johnson and others. (Note 1) It is found in exposed to highly
exposed rocky habitats
down to at least 15 m (50 ft) and
is reported to produce
irritating mucous secretions. (Note 2)
Big Island, Maui, Lanai and Oahu: widely distributed in the
Indo-Pacific; also in
the eastern Pacific.
first photo labeled Dendrodoris
tuberculosa in Bertsch & Johnson, 1981 is this
species. It was first recorded in Hawaii at Pupukea, Oahu by Scott
Johnson on Sept. 19,
1978. However, it seems possible that Doris
rugosa Pease, 1860 is a synonym of this species rather than of Dendrodoris tuberculosa as
suggested in Kay, 1979. In that case, it was first reported from Hawaii in Pease, 1860.
Severns: 61 mm: Ahihi Bay, Maui; Nov. 11, 1987.
Observations and comments:
1: This difference may be due to
the fact that we haven't spent as much time working at exposed sites on
Note 2: Painful
the eyes and lips after rubbing with the mucus has been reported by
Loch (as quoted on the Sea
Slug Forum). Scott Johnson also reported a
reaction (pers. com.).