Eubranchus vittatus
(Alder & Hancock, 1842)

Family: Eubranchidae


Known from British Isles, Norway and nthn Spain.


Lephinchapel Reef, Loch Long, Scotland [Sea Loch on west coast of Scotland]. Depth: 14 metres. Length: 20 mm (approx), 21 November 2004. Rocky reef. Photographer: Jim Anderson

Formerly known as Eubranchus cingulatus (Alder & Hancock, 1847). Animal translucent clear with scattered patches of brown and opaque white. On body the brown of the viscera shows through the body wall as well. The cerata have a white band near the tip and a one to three green or brown bands below it. As Bernard Picton states in a separate message [#7187 ], E. vittatus normally has no swellings on the cerata, but a hint of three swellings can appear with darker rings between (hence the name cingulatus). This can be compared with Eubranchus exiguus, which  has one large swelling on each ceras, and E. doriae, which has two swellings. The ceratal digestive gland in E. vittatus is white, and visible through the transparent ceratal wall. The smooth tapering rhinophores have scattered opaque white patches in the upper half and a brown or greenish band below. It grows to about 20 mm in length. Picton reports it to feed exclusively on the plumulariid hydroid Kirchenpaueria pinnata, while the similar E. doriae feeds on Kirchenpaueria similis.

  • Alder, J., & Albany Hancock. (1842) Descriptions of several new species of nudibranchous Mollusca found on the coast of Northumberland. Annals & Magazine of Natural History, 9: 31-36.
  • Alder, J. and Hancock, A. (1847) Part 3, for 1846: A monograph of the British Nudibranchiate Mollusca: with figures of all the species. pp. Fam. 1, pls. 6, 8, 19, 25; Fam. 2, pl. 3; Fam. 3, pls. 1a, 7, 19, 28, 31, 33.  (The Ray Society: London.)
  • Edmunds, M, & Kress, A (1969) On the European species of Eubranchus (Mollusca Opisthobranchia). Journal of the Marine Biological Association, United Kingdom 49(4): 879-912, Pls.1-2.
  • Picton, B. E., & Christine Morrow. 1994. A field guide to the nudibranchs of the British Isles, 143 pp. Immel Publishing.
  • Schmekel, L. & Portmann, A (1982) Opisthobranchia des Mittelmeeres, Nudibranchia und Saccoglossa. Fauna e Flora del Golfo Napoli, 40: 1-410. Springer-Verlag: Berlin
  • Thompson, T.E. & Brown, G. H (1976): British opisthobranch molluscs. Mollusca: Gastropoda. Synopses of the British fauna (new series), no 8. Linnean Society, London.
  • Thompson, T. E., &  Brown, G.H.. (1984) Biology of opisthobranch Molluscs. Vol. 2. Ray Society; London. 1-229.

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2005 (January 5) Eubranchus vittatus (Alder & Hancock, 1842) . [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Related messages

  1. Re: First record of Eubranchus vittatus in Norway
    From: Bernard Picton, August 8, 2005
  2. Re: First record of Eubranchus vittatus in Norway
    From: Jussi Evertsen, August 3, 2005
  3. First record of Eubranchus vittatus in Norway
    From: Kåre Telnes, August 2, 2005
  4. Eubranchus vittatus from Scotland
    From: Jim Anderson, January 5, 2005

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