Eubranchus rubeolus
Burn, 1964

Family: Eubranchidae


Known from a single specimen from Victoria Australia. Possibly ocurs in New Zealand (see discussion below).


Eubranchus rubeolus - original drawing of holotype, 7 mm long alive. Point Lonsdale, Port Phillip Heads, Victoria, Australia. Burn 1964, Fig 6.

This species was described from a single specimen from Victoria, Australia. I have copied below Burn's description of the external features.

Description: The living slug was 7 mm. in length; preserved it is 3 mm. long including the turned up tail. 1,1 mm. wide and 1.1 mm. high. The medianly folded sole is 0.7 mm. wide over the thickened margins, the cerata are up to 1.1 mm. long. Alive the body colour was white with shining yellow edges to the foot and head, the rhinophores and tentacles were dark red except for a subapical yellow band and a white cap, On the notum there were 3 round or elongate dark red patches: 3 patches (Fig. 6m) each side correspond with the spaces between the notal patches plus one below the rhinophores. Cerata heavily pigmented: digestive gland dark red for lower four-fifths, white above: cnidosacs white: the skin over the dark red digestive gland is red, over the white part and above it is pale gold with subepidermal white pigment cells. Preserved the coloration consists of yellow body and yellow capped dark red cerata.

Miller (1971) identified a eubranchid from sthn New Zealand as E. rubeolus but there are considerable differences in colour pattern between the two. An example of the New Zealand 'species' has recently been posted on the Forum [message #16605]. The only specimen known of the Victorian species is the holotype. Until more specimens from New Zealand and Australia are rediscovered it is difficult to know whether the colour differences are within the normal range of variation within one species or whether we have two species.

  • Burn, R.F. (1964)  Descriptions of Australian Eolidacea (Mollusca: Opisthobranchia) 2. The genera Nossis, Eubranchus, Trinchesia, and Toorna. J. Mal. Soc. Aust., 8: 10-22.
  • Miller, M.C. (1971) Aeolid nudibranchs of the family Flabellinidae and Eubranchidae from New Zealand waters. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 50: 311-337.
Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2006 (May 15) Eubranchus rubeolus Burn, 1964. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from