Eubranchopsis virginalis from Japan

April 12, 2000
From: Yasuhiro Shirai

Dear Bill,
I attached 2 image files in this mail.
This animal have black spots on its body and cerata.

Could you please identify this animal for me?

Location: Kushimoto Japan
Length: 7mm
Water temperature: 15C
Date 12 March 2000
Depth: -1m
Crawling sea weed.

Best regards,
Yasuhiro Shirai

Shirai, Y., 2000 (Apr 12) Eubranchopsis virginalis from Japan. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Yasuhiro,
I am pretty sure this is Eubranchopis virginalis Baba, 1949. Baba (1949, 1971) does not mention the orange bands on the rhinophores and oral tentacles, but Abe (1964) shows dark bands in his black & white illustration, which probably represent these bands. As soon as I saw your photo I thought of the painting in Baba's Opisthobranchs of Sagami Bay (1949).
What is not clear in your photos are the 'acutely pointed tubercles' which are reported by Baba and Abe to occur on the cerata, but in other eubranchids such tubercles are sometimes very obvious and sometimes almost invisible. Certainly the shape of the cerata as you can see in the lower photo have the characteristic eubranchid shape gradually increasing in diameter from the base to about halfway along its length and then sharply decreasing in diameter to form a long tapering upper third.

This is a very interesting find. I don't know of a reference to this animal outside the references I list below.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman.

•Abe, T. (1964) Opisthobranchia of Toyama Bay and adjacent waters.
Hokuryan-Kan: Tokyo. 100pp, Pls 1-36.
•Baba, K. (1949) Opisthobranchia of Sagami Bay Iwanami Shoten: Tokyo.
•Baba, K. (1971) Supplementary note on the anatomy of Eubranchus virginalis (Baba, 1949) from Japan (Nudibranchia: Eolidoidea: Eubranchidae). Publications of the Seto Marine Biological Laboratory, 19(1): 39-42.

Rudman, W.B., 2000 (Apr 12). Comment on Eubranchopsis virginalis from Japan by Yasuhiro Shirai. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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