Rostanga from South Africa

August 15, 2002
From: Valda Fraser

Dear Bill,
A "new" orange one! Have you any ideas?
Locality: Pumula, south coast KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, 28m
Date: July 2002
Size: 12mm

Valda Fraser

Fraser, V., 2002 (Aug 15) Rostanga from South Africa. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Valda,
It seems to have a 'furry' back so the most likely identification is that it is a species of Rostanga. Garovoy et al (2001) recently described the similarly coloured Rostanga elandsia from South Africa, but it was from the Atlantic coast while your is from the Indian Ocean coast. Yours also does not show the small brown spots visible in their species.

As I say quite often, most species of Rostanga are orange-red in colour and can only be properly identified by looking at their anatomy, in particular their radula. I suspect your animal is one of the Indo-West Pacific species, such as R. bifurcata, but there is no way of knowing from a photo.

• Garovoy, J.B., Vald├ęs, A., & Gosliner, T.M. (2001) Phylogeny of the genus Rostanga (Nudibranchia), with descriptions of three new species from South Africa. Journal of Molluscan Studies 67: 131-144.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

2002 (Aug 15). Comment on Rostanga from South Africa by Valda Fraser. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from


Rostanga spp.

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