Hypselodoris from Bonaire (Caribbean)

May 20, 2003
From: Brian Mayes

Note added 25 March 2008: The species, which has been called Hypselodoris sp. 5 on the Forum, has now been named Hypselodoris olgae. The animal in this message may or may not be Hypselodoris olgae but I will leave it here at present- see message #22347.

On 24th April 2003,I found a small Nudibranch while diving off the Carribean Island of Bonaire.

It was at a depth of 8 metres and was in a area of coral rubble and sand on "Reef Scientifico" opposite Captain Don's Habitat.
Using Humann's Reef Creature Book, I identified it as a Purple-spotted Sea Goddess, Hypselodoris species, not found in that area. I consulted local Marine Biologist Dee Scarr, and she stated that the latest edition of the book showed it to be "Uncommon, Northwest Caribbean, Venezuela, also south to Brazil.". She also stated "On the other hand, note that the critter in the Humann books (same photo both editions) shows dark purple tips on white rhinophores (feeler-thingies in the front), while yours has purple rhinophores with tiny very dark tips. Can you help with Identification and say if this is has been found before in Bonaire

Brian Mayes


Mayes, B., 2003 (May 20) Hypselodoris from Bonaire (Caribbean). [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/9824

Dear Brian,
I am afraid that some of the chromodorids in the Caribbean are still in a bit of confusion. Publishing photos of them like this so we get a better idea of their variability will help give us a better idea of how many species there are.

This is what I am calling on the Forum Hypselodoris sp. 5. If you look on that page you will see some of the discussion about its identity. It looks quite like the photo of H. bayeri in Marcus & Marcus (1967) - if we ignore lack of lines. Unfortunately until we get a better idea on just what is a species, its a little difficult to know whether it has been recorded from Bonaire before. I may be wrong but I suspect the chance of Bonaire having a unique endemic marine fauna is fairly slight. It more probable that the marine fauna of Bonaire is very similar, if not identical to that of similar habitats eleswhere in the Caribbean.

Rudman, W.B., 2003 (May 20). Comment on Hypselodoris from Bonaire (Caribbean) by Brian Mayes. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/9824


Hypselodoris olgae

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