digestive gland detail
young, 3 mm
Baeolidia salaamica (Rudman, 1982)
|Maximum size: 20 mm.
species is similar to Baeolidia
moebii. However, it differs from that species in lacking
extensive ramifications of the digestive gland in the notum, foot,
rhinophores and cephalic tentacles (though it occasionally has them on the sides of its head). Its cerata are more numerous and
slenderer than in B. moebii
and they usually lack an obvious blue subapical band. Unlike in B. moebii, the cerata tips have
a moderately common species. It's occasionally found in protected rocky
habitats in as little at 1 m (3 ft). However, it is most common in Halimeda kanaloana beds at depths
of 10-14 m (33-46 ft). It appears to be nocturnally active,
concealing itself under rocks during the day. It feeds on the anemone Exaiptasia diaphana. (Note 1) Its egg mass is a cream
or peach spiral composed of a "kinked" ribbon. (Note 2) The eggs hatch in 4-5 days in the laboratory.
Big Island, Maui, Oahu and Kauai: widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific.
photos labeled Berghia major
in Kay, 1979; Hoover, 1998 & 2006 and Bertch & Johnson, 1981
of Baeolidia salaamica. It was
deleted in the 5th printing of Hoover, 2006. Some sites list this species as Spurilla
Photo: CP: 12
mm; dark; found by PF; Maalaea Bay, Maui; Sept. 28, 2008.
Observations and comments:
1: Kelly McCaffrey and Jenna Szerlag observed one attacking an Exaiptasia diaphana at Maalaea Bay in 2022. Jenna
reported: "This was found by Kelly this morning at Kealia 24ft. He saw
the approach and the initial attack/reaction. I watched it pull and tug
on the anemone's tentacles a few times. They appeared to spring back
into place as if unsuccessfully chewed off." After the initial
contact, the tips of the inner tentacles ruptured and acontia were
extruded and withdrawn through the ruptures. (see photo sequence)
Note 2: Perhaps, the variation in egg mass color is due to diet (both were freshly laid when photographed)?