Flabellina nobilis
(Verrill, 1880)

Family: Flabellinidae


Northeast coast of Nth America (Massachusetts, Maine), Greenland, Iceland, the Faeroes, Barents Sea, nthn coast of Norway. Reported below from Ireland.


New England. Photo: Paul Young

Grows to 40-50mm. Translucent white body with maroon to red-brown cerata with conspicuous white tips. The elongate body has numerous cerata evenly distributed and held tightly and flattened over the dorsum. There are a few scattered white specks behind the pericardium and these coaslesce to form a median white line down the length of the pointed 'tail'. The oral tentacles have a median line of white specks which grows thicker towards the tip and the rhinophores have white pigment spots at the tip, especially on the posterior edge. The rhinophores appear somewhat wrinkled but on close examination are seen to be covered in small papillae or warts.

Five species of of Flabellina have been recorded from the east coast of North America and while they are quite distinguishable on the shape of their radular teeth it is sometimes difficult to identify them externally, in the field or from photographs. The species are Flabellina verrucosa, Flabellina gracilis, Flabellina pellucida, Flabellina salmonacea & Flabellina nobilis. If anyone could summarise the differences between these species, so they could be identiifed more easily in the field, or from photographs, I would be grateful.

• Kuzirian, A.M. (1977) The rediscovery and biology of Coryphella nobilis Verrill, 1880 in New England (Gastropoda: Opisthobranchia). Journal of Molluscan Studies, 43: 230-240.
• Kuzirian, A.M. (1979) Taxonomy and biology of four New England coryphellid nudibranchs. Journal of Molluscan Studies, 45: 239-261.

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2001 (June 28) Flabellina nobilis (Verrill, 1880). [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/factsheet/flabnobi

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  4. New England Flabellina is F. nobilis
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