young, 4 mm
Plocamopherus ceylonicus (Kelaart, 1858)
|Maximum size: 27 mm.
This is a translucent-gray animal intricately flecked and spotted with
white, brown and orange. The pattern becomes progressively more
intricate as the animal grows. There are three pairs of elongate
papillae on the sides of the notum with the anterior and posterior
bearing pinkish "balls" in mature animals. There is a well developed
dorsal crest on the anterior portion of the notum.
is a moderately rare species known from several animals found at depths of 5-110
m (18-328 ft). The "balls" on the lateral papillae are probably
bioluminescent and it can swim by lateral flexing if disturbed.
Big Island, Maui, Oahu, Niihau, Midway and Kure: widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific.
It was probably first recorded in Hawaii from off Hale'iwa, Oahu by
Terry Gosliner and Gary Williams in Oct. 1973 (dredged).
Photo: CP: 27 mm:
Maalaea Bay, Maui; Oct. 23, 2010.
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