May 23, 2001
From: Andrew Green
Phil Bendle from Norseman Charters at Tutukaka, NZ gave me your website address. Here is a photo of an unidentified nudibranch.
Location: Poor Knights Ids, [NE New Zealand] about 200 metres north of entrance to Riko Riko, site known locally as "The Garden", taken at night, 19/5/99. Estimated
depth: 7-10 metres. taken with micro-nikkor at 1:1. Length of nudibranchs about 8-10mm.
Would appreciate advice of ID some time, when you have time. I am about to head back there in 2 weeks, for annual week long charter with Phil (6th trip). I have some other odd nudis from earlier trips if you are interested.
Green, A,, 2001 (May 23) Janolus cf. novozealandicus from New Zealand. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/4383
Thanks for the photo of this interesting species. The two animals are apparently feeding on the red arborescent bryozoan which I would tentatively identify as Orthoscuticella cf. margaritacea. It is almost certainly a species of Janolus. New Zealand members of this group were reviewed quite recently by Miller & Willan (1986), but your animal doesn't fit the known species very well. It seems that the cerata in these animals are somewhat variable in shape sometimes long and slender, and at other times more like in your photo.
The only species yours seem to resemble is Janolus novozealandicus. We recently were sent photos of a similar looking animal from Victoria, Australia. One distinctive feature of both your animal and the Victorian one is the tubercles on the cerata, which Miller & Willan say occur in both J. novozealandicus and the apparently introduced species Janolus hyalinus. In your lower right photo you can see the dark brown digestive gland duct passing right to the tip of each ceras. Miller & Willan say that is characteristic of J. novozealandicus. In J. hyalinus the duct stops about halfway up the ceras. I am not sure if these animals are the same species or if either is J. novozealandicus so for the moment I am putting them together on a Janolus cf. novozealandicus Page.
Hopefully Richard Willan or Michael Miller can offer their views