young, about 25 mm
Phyllidia exquisita Brunckhorst, 1993
|Maximum size: 56 mm.
possesses a translucent-gray body covered with minute flecks
of white that impart a distinctive granular appearance not found in
other Hawaiian Phyllidiids. The simple tubercles are
evenly distributed across the notum. The larger ones are tipped with
bright yellow and ringed with white basally while the smaller ones are
tipped with white. There are two meandering, lateral black lines with
extensions running toward the margin. A few black
spots are scattered on the notum with more being found marginally. The
mantle margin possesses an irregular yellow edge.
rhinophores are yellow and the oral tentacles are white with yellow
tips. It can be distinguished from the much more common Phyllidia
varicosa by its more
isolated tubercles, granular appearance and yellow mantle margin.
moderately rare species found in cracks and on shaded walls and slopes.
It is found in exposed locations from 8-23 m (25-75 ft). It was twice
feeding on a thin orange encrusting sponge.
Big Island, Maui, Kahoolawe, Oahu, Kauai and Niihau: widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific.
Taxonomic notes: It was first
in Hawaii from off Makena, Maui by PF on Sept. 10,
Photo: PF: 36
mm: Molokini Islet, Maui; June, 1999.
Observations and comments:
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