Shell & gizzard plates of Philine orientalis

May 2, 2006
From: Dong Bum Koh

Dear Bill,
Concerning earlier message [#15459 ]:

Hear are the shell & gizzard plates extracted from an animal of the same species. Lengths: Shell 21 mm; large gizzard plates 18 mm; small plate 11 mm.

Also another photo of the animal. Locality: Hwa Soon. Jeju island, South Korea. Pacific. Depth: 5 m. 22 April 2006. Sandy bottom.  Photographer: Dong Bum Koh.

Best regards,
Dong Bum Koh

D.B.Koh, 2006 (May 2) Shell & gizzard plates of Philine orientalis. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Koh,
I am glad to see my prediction about the shape of the gizzard plates proved correct. There seems to be an evolutionary sequence in the genus from 'primitive' species with small uncalcified plates all of similar shape and size, through species with small equi-sized calcareous plates [see Philine auriformis], to the large muscular species like this one with large calcareous plates, two of which are large and mirror images of each other, and a third smaller one of a more symmetrical shape. I have also included a close-up of the inside of one of the large gizzard plates to show the pair of microscopic holes they usually have. I have no idea of their function - if any.

As you can see in the photo alongside, the gizzard plates can often be seem through the body wall of the living animals.
Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Rudman, W.B., 2006 (May 2). Comment on Shell & gizzard plates of Philine orientalis by Dong Bum Koh. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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