August 31, 2007
From: Linda Ianniello
Here is a subject that will probably cause some discussion! It is identified in Caribbean Sea Slugs as a Chelidonura cubana, and this is a new sighting for us in Florida, USA. But I see where there is question whether these Caribbean species are all C. africana....
Locality: Lake Worth Lagoon, 20 feet, Florida, USA, Atlantic Ocean, August 20, 2007, Tidal lagoon with strong currents. Length: approx. 1 inch. Photographer: Linda Ianniello.
Ianniello, L.M., 2007 (Aug 31) Chelidonura cubana from Florida, USA. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/20550
I am always up for a bit of discussion! It is a worry when another name is introduced into the confusion surrounding the Caribbean aglajids [see message #12457]. Chelidonura cubana was based on three tiny animals about 3 mm long. Not that small size is a barrier to being named, but it means that if the animals are juvenile then the colour pattern may be lacking elements found in fully grown individuals.
You are certainly right in thinking that I might refer to C. africana. If you look at the photos in a recent message from Croatia [#17561] it certainly shows many similarities. The white patch on the front of the head and on the posterior tip of the head shield seem quite characteristic. It also has close similarities to C. hirundinina [#19942 from Nthn Marianas; #8777 from Lord Howe Is] but seems to differ in the white marks I mention above. In C. hirundinina the only white mark is usually a white crescent on the posterior shield.
In Caribbean Sea Slugs, one Caribbean species, C. berolina, is tentatively considered distinct from C. africana, which could be so. On the Forum I have leaned towards synonymising that species as well. However I would think that C. cubana, with the same colour elements as C. africana, is a synonym of that species. I will post a Fact Sheet for C. cubana at this stage so it doesn't get lost, but I am very doubtful of its validity.
Locality: Lake Worth Lagoon, 20 feet, Florida, USA, Atlantic Ocean, August 20, 2007, Tidal lagoon with strong currents. Length: approx. 1 inch. Photographer: Linda Ianniello.Rudman, W.B., 2007 (Aug 31). Comment on Chelidonura cubana from Florida, USA by Linda Ianniello. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/20550