with egg mass
Flabellina bicolor (Kelaart, 1858)
|Maximum Size: 20 mm.
translucent bluish-white with opaque white on the
cephalic tentacles, rhinophores and cerata. Animals from deeper water
often have irregular, opaque-white patches on the notum. The
cerata have partial or complete bright orange subapical bands. The
tentacles can appear relatively short and cylindrical or extremely long
laterally compressed depending on posture. They may be white along most
of their length or have a translucent medial band.
is a common diurnal species found in moderately protected
to exposed rocky habitats and in Halimeda
kanaloana beds from the low intertidal to at least 24 m (79 ft).
A 7.5 mm animal of the deep water color form laid a spiral egg mass of
1.3 whorls that was 1.5 mm in diameter with a 0.4 mm high ribbon. It
was pale pinkish-orange in color.
Big Island, Maui, Oahu, Niihau, Laysan, Midway and Kure: widely
species listed as Flabellina
sp. in Kay, 1979 and as Flabellina
alisonae in Bertsch & Johnson, 1981 as well as Gosliner, 1979. In addition, Samla annuligera Bergh, 1900,
described from Laysan, is considered a synonym. (Gosliner
& Willan, 1991) There is some possibility that the white spotted
and translucent animals might ultimately turn out to be different
species. (Note 1) It's referred to as the
"bicolor nudibranch" in
Hoover, 1998 & 2006. It was first reported from Hawaii in Bergh, 1900.
PF: off Makena, Maui; October, 1989.
Observations and comments:
1: In our experience, translucent
animals are found over a fairly broad depth range starting
< 1 m (< 3 ft). In contrast, white spotted animals appear to be
and confined to depths over 10 m (33 ft).