Doto from Indonesia

April 7, 2001
From: Tony Wu

Dear Bill,
I write and photograph for Asian Diver magazine in Singapore, and Sportdiving magazine in Australia. I am in the process of publishing a collection of marine photos, and I was wondering if it would be possible to ask for some help in identifying a few images of nudibranchs.

The attached image is from the waters near Berau in East Kalimantan, Indonesia. The depth was 23 metres, sandy bottom, in an area with strong current. The nudibranchs appear to have mated and laid long egg masses which appear in the background, flowing with the current. They are on a hydroid-like organism.

I can't seem to find these in any of my guide books. Thanks very much for any guidance you can offer.

Best regards,

Wu, T., 2001 (Apr 7) Doto from Indonesia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Tony,
This is a species of Doto. It has similarities to two species described from Japan, Doto japonica and Doto bella which both have a black spot at the tip of each ceratal tubercle. However neither has been reported to have the ceratal tip capped in yellow like your animal. It is possible the egg masses in the background belong to this Doto but unless you actually see them producing them you can never be sure. Another nudibranch could have been past in the last few days and decided that this was a nice spot to lay some eggs.

Species of Doto look and behave very much like aeolids. They have aeolid-like cerata and they feed on hydroids like many little aeolids. They are however more closely related to the soft-coral feeding tritoniids. Unlike aeolids they do not have cnidosacs at the tip of their cerata to store nematocysts from their cnidarian prey.
Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Rudman, W.B., 2001 (Apr 7). Comment on Doto from Indonesia by Tony Wu. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from


Doto sp. 7

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