Re: Umbraculum - how many species?

February 17, 2000
From: Erwin Koehler

Hi Bill,
The question is not one or two species, at Guido T. Poppe's site there are 10 species!


Erwin Koehler, E., 2000 (Feb 17) Re: Umbraculum - how many species?. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Erwin,
The problem with lists, especially now with databases, is that they are too easy to prepare. Preparing a list of names from the literature does not mean they are valid or available. I have added Poppe's list below:

Umbraculum bertinia F. P. Jousseaume, 1833 Japan
Umbraculum chinesis Schumacher, 1817 Indo Pacific = sinicum
Umbraculum mediterraneum J. B. Lamarck, 1819 Europe
Umbraculum ovale P. P. Carpenter, 1856 West America
Umbraculum plicatulum E. Von Martens, 1881 East America
Umbraculum rushii W. H. Dall, 1889 America
Umbraculum sinicum J. F. Gmelin, 1791 Indo Pacific
Umbraculum umbraculum Lightfoot, 1786 Indo Pacific
Umbraculum umbrella Martyn, Japan
Umbraculum unguiculus Rang, 1827 Europe

All except the last one are either accepted synonyms of U. umbraculum or U. mediterraneum depending on whether they are from the Indo-West Pacific or the Atlantic.

Umbraculum unguiculus is based on - one fossil shell from Miocene of France. A Recent shell has been reported from Portugal (Hoeksema & Janssen (1984) Basteria, 48: 7-11) but there is no way of knowing if the fossil and the recent shell are the same. It was originally described as Spiricella unguiculus and there is no way of knowing if it is an Umbraculum.

One name missing from the list is
Umbraculum pulchrum Lin Guangyu, 1981 (Oceanologia & Limnologia Sinica, 12(3):286-290. There is no anatomical detail in the description to separate it from U. umbraculum.

So I am afraid I can't say how many species there are but I'm pretty sure there are no more than two. One lesson from the exercise is to realise that lists are meaningless unless they are attached to some information.

Bill Rudman.

Rudman, W.B., 2000 (Feb 17). Comment on Re: Umbraculum - how many species? by Erwin Koehler. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Related messages

  1. Umbraculum from Venezuela
    From: Virginia Malpica, August 5, 2006
  2. Umbraculum from Turkey
    From: Charles McGurk, July 7, 2006
  3. Umbraculum mediterraneum from Croatia
    From: Andrej Jaklin, May 16, 2006
  4. Umbraculum mediterraneum
    From: Luigi Montevecchi, January 26, 2005
  5. Umbraculum f rom Florida
    From: Robert Shearer, July 16, 2004
  6. Umbraculum mediterraneum from Cape Verde Ids
    From: Gérard Breton, September 5, 2003
  7. Re: Caribbean Umbraculum - mating
    From: Dee Scarr, April 29, 2003
  8. Caribbean Umbraculum - mating
    From: Dee Scarr , April 7, 2003
  9. Umbraculum umbraculum? from Turkey
    From: Haluk Akbatur, November 15, 2002
  10. Umbraculum f rom Florida
    From: Maris Kazmers, September 12, 2002
  11. Umbraculum mediterraneum from France
    From: Marina Poddubetskaia, July 29, 2002
  12. Umbraculum in Florida
    From: Randy Jordan, June 1, 2002
  13. Re: Umbraculum - how many species?
    From: Angel Valdés, February 19, 2000
  14. Umbraculum - one or two species?
    From: Erwin Koehler, February 16, 2000
  15. Umbraculum mediterraneum from Canary Ids
    From: M.Thorpe & K. Nagengast, February 13, 2000
  16. I need help with Umbraculum mediterraneum
    From: Roberto Moresco, January 14, 1999

Show factsheet and all related messages