Re: Cross-species breeding

April 26, 2006
From: Cynthia Trowbridge

Concerning message #16049:

Dear Jasmine and Bill,
I have been thinking about the same issue of cross breeding but in sacoglossans. I have seen individuals of one sacoglossan species crawl actively over and around individuals of another species while extending and waving the male structure (penis and stylet). I did not witness mutual copulation or even hypodermic penetration.... thus, I would conclude one species was exhibiting sexual signals but the other was not responding. The barriers to cross-fertilization of species differ among taxa but could be behavioral, structural, chemical, etc. I watched the sacoglossans periodically for 24 hours and the slug exhibited sexual interest eventually (many hours) became disinterested, retracted its penis, and crawled away. I would be interested in learning if others have seen analogous behaviors in other opisthobranchs.


Trowbridge, C.D., 2006 (Apr 26) Re: Cross-species breeding. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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