Aglaja felis from the Bahamas

April 15, 2003
From: Anne DuPont

Another little mystery....
I found these with the other aglajids [Chelidonura hirundinina, C. berolina, and Philinopsis depicta] over a range of 100 miles in the Exumas chain of islands, Southern Bahamas, in depths from 2 feet to 10 feet. [January - March, 2003].

The black ones were 1/8 inch to about 1 inch long. The brownish ones [lower photo] were a little "longer and skinny". The one in the photo was about 1/4 inch long and was photographed in a dish.

DuPont, A., 2003 (Apr 15) Aglaja felis from the Bahamas. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Thanks Anne,
I am not sure these two are the same species - I guess only a detailed study of the populations will sort that out. Marcus & Marcus (1970) described another species from Puerto Rico which they called Aglaja felis. The living animals were 8-12mm long, and the colour is described from photos as 'velvet black all over, or dark reddish brown'. Thompson (1977) reports numerous 4-7mm long specimens of the black colour form from Jamaica.

The upper photo fits the original description of A. felis. The original description does not mention lighter specks on the body so it is possible the brownish speckled animal is a second species. I guess this is something that only more work will sort out

• Marcus, Er. & Marcus, Ev. (1970) Opisthobranchs from Curacao and faunistically related regions. Uitqaven van der Natuurwetenschappelijke Studiekring voor Suriname en de Nederlandse Antillen, 59: 1-129.
• Thompson, T.E. (1977) Jamaican opisthobranch molluscs I. Journal of Molluscan Studies, 43(2): 93-139, pls.1-3.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Rudman, W.B., 2003 (Apr 15). Comment on Aglaja felis from the Bahamas by Anne DuPont. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from


Aglaja felis

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