Chromodoris macfarlandi? from California

June 10, 2006
From: Josiah Renfree

I'm sorry that I don't have a picture, but I was hoping that a simple description would be enough. I went diving at the Anacapa island off the coast of California and saw a bunch of spanish shawls, but there was one nudibranch of which I have no idea what it is. It was really small, maybe about the size of a pen cap, and was blue with a single yellow stripe running length-wise across its body. That's about all the description I can give you, but hopefully that will suffice.

Locality: Island, 30 feet, California, USA, Pacific Ocean, 04 June 2006, Rocky bottom off the island of Anacapa. Length: 2 inches

Josiah Renfree

Renfree, J., 2006 (Jun 10) Chromodoris macfarlandi? from California. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Hi Josiah:
Wow..... you have provided us with a challenge.  Because sea slugs are so diverse and variable it is very difficult to make an identification from a written description without a photo.  As a matter of fact, often times we cannot be sure even with a photo.

That said, I am thinking (guessing) that your species was Chromodoris macfarlandi.  This is the only species I can think of that lives in the waters of Anacapa Island and is sometimes blue and has a yellow mid-dorsal stripe.

With that hint, what do you think?
Dave Behrens

Behrens, D.W., 2006 (Jun 10). Comment on Chromodoris macfarlandi? from California by Josiah Renfree. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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