Polybranchia cf. jannae Madrano, Krug, Gosliner, Kumar & Valdes, 2018
|Maximum size: about 7 mm.
leaf-like, tuberculate cerata with serrated edges. The tubercles are
tipped with white and irregular networks
of fine white lines ascend the cerata. They contain small,
granular subapical masses and the outer faces of some have basal
patches of diffuse, brick-red pigment that may appear denser when they
contract. There are elongate black and diffuse white medial
patches on their inner faces. The marginal serrations contain faintly
iridescent violet spots. The rhinophores are translucent-cream with
golden brown patches.
Polybranchia cf. jannae
is known from one animal found crawling on sand-saturated algal turf
during the day. It was found at a depth of 4 m (12 ft) at a moderately
exposed site. If this animal is representative, it readily autotomizes its central cerata.
Maui: may be known from the western Pacific.
Taxonomic notes: This species is similar to some animals assigned to Polybranchia jannae
from the western Pacific. However, the match is imperfect so we're
treating the ID as tentative pending more material. (Note 1) Similar animals from elsewhere can be seen at Lazy Diving and Sea Slug World. It was first recorded in
Hawaii from Maalaea Bay, Maui by Jenna Szerlag on March 23, 2021.
Szerlag: about 7 mm; cerata contracted with some autotomized and
adhering to others: Maalaea Bay, Maui; March 23, 2021.
Observations and comments:
1: There may also be some ambiguity associated with interpreting the characters of autotomized cerata.