Slugs of my childhood - Baja California

November 9, 2005
From: Alicia Sarun

Ever since I can remember my family has been traveling to a little house we have in Baja California. As a child I used to play in the tidepools that were in the little cove of our beach. Some of my best playmates in those days were the sea hares we could find all over the beach. We would find them in shallow pools or in water 3-4 feet deep. Then we would pick them up and put them on our boogie boards and paddle around in the shallow calm water with them. We had such fun with those animals and always handled them gently, even petted them as if they were a cat or dog (they did seem to like it though). Anyway my question is can you tell me what species they were given the information on location and a verbal discription. There were 2 types, one smaller usually 6"-1' that was tan and sometimes a little greenish with dark brown spots all over, this slugs skin was smooth and soft. The other type was usually 1'-18" in length and was much larger than the other, it was black all over and had a more textured skin, bumpy and less silky feeling than the other. The large black ones were far less common than the smaller ones. I am sad to say that over the years the population of sea hares in that little cove has dwindled down to almost nothing. I can not even find the black ones anymore and rarely see the little spotted ones that used to be so abundent. It seems like the reason may be the kelp cutters that have been making more frequent visits to the area just beyond our little cove. Anyhow if you are able to answer my question that would be awesome, just to satisfy a curiosity I have had.


Sarun, A., 2005 (Nov 9) Slugs of my childhood - Baja California. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Alicia,
I am sure someone with local knowldege of the area should be able to ientify your Sea Hares
Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

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