Dermatobranchus nigropunctatus
Baba, 1949

Suborder: ARMININA
Family: Arminidae


Japan, and possibly eastern Australia


Little Beach, Marine Reserve, Port Stephens, NSW  Australia.
Depth: 10 metres. Pacific Ocean. Length: 30 mm. 5 October 2004. Sandy bottom with scattered sponges & soft corals. Photographer: Leanne & David Atkinson

Originally described from Japan, the animal is described as having lines of small black spots running along the longitudinal ridges on the mantle. The mantle, foot and oral veil are lined with orange, and the white oral veil and foot have scattered black spots and patches. The rhinophores are described as 'brownish or orange'. The background colour of the mantle was described as 'olive ... with darker shades here and there'.

The animal illustrated here from eastern Australia agrees with this description except that the black spots on the dorsal ridges have become continuous balck line. If I'm correct, then this is a new record for Australia. It doesn't necessarily suggest this species is a recent arrival, it more likely means that we haven't been looking hard enough. It's also possible that a couple of photos from South Africa I identified as  D. cf. gonatophora [messages #2146, #2176] are possibly D. nigropunctatus as well, but the Sth African animals have black rhinophores with no trace of the orange found in Australian and Japanese specimens.

  • Baba, K (1949) Opisthobranchia of Sagami Bay collected by His Majesty The Emperor of Japan. Iwanami Shoten, Tokyo. 194pp., 50 Pls.
Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2005 (April 18) Dermatobranchus nigropunctatus Baba, 1949. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Related messages

  1. Dermatobranchus nigropunctatus from NSW, Australia
    From: Jennifer Eaton, June 29, 2007
  2. Dermatobranchus nigropunctatus from east Australia
    From: L. & D. Atkinson, April 19, 2005

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