Eubranchus rubropunctatus
Edmunds, 1969

Family: Eubranchidae


Possible wide Indo-West Pacific distribution


Heron Is., Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. 6-10mm long alive. Photo: Julie Marshall.

Described from one 4mm long animal from Tanzania, it is not possible to be sure which features of its colour pattern are variable. The body and appendages were described as:
'transparent greyish and the whole of the dorsal and lateral surfaces are covered in brownish-yellow spots and with white spots. ... The cerata are huge for the size of the animal and have two tiers of tubercles and a bulbous tip. The liver duct in the cerata is brown and narrow but swells just below the cnidosac region as in Eubranchus misakiensis. The tubercles are white and there is a band of white just below the cnidosac region. Distal to this is a band of gold, then a band of pale blue containing from four to six circular red spots, then another band of gold, and the tip of the cnidosac is clear.'

A similarly coloured species, without the red spots, is illustrated here on the Forum from Hong Kong as Eubranchus cf. rubropunctatus. Eubranchus rubropunctatus was described from one 4mm long juvenile. Julie Marshall's photo differs in two features. In the original description the rhinophores were described as having 'spaced small tubercles'. I assume that in Edmund's juvenile specimen the large prominent rhinophoral papillae in this photo of a larger animal were undeveloped. The second difference is that in the original specimen, the red spots on the cerata were in a band of blue, which can't be seen Julie's photos.

Note added 15 May 2009: See discussion [message #22443] as to whether this is a synonym of Eubranchus mandapamensis.

• Edmunds, M. (1969) Opisthobranchiate Mollusca from Tanzania I. Eolidacea (Eubranchidae and Aeolidiidae). Proceedings of the Malacological Society of London, 38: 451-469.
• Marshall, J.G and Willan, R.C. 1999. Nudibranchs of Heron Island. Leiden, Backhuys Publishers. (Eubranchus rubropunctatus, pp. 138-139, 251).

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2001 (July 13) Eubranchus rubropunctatus Edmunds, 1969. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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  1. Eubranchus rubropunctatus from Heron Island
    From: Julie Marshall, September 26, 2001

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