Physalia from Western Australia

February 13, 2004
From: Monika Stambergova

Dear Dr. Rudman,
I wish to ask you about some species I and my friend found in Western Australia last year. I took pictures of them, which I enclose. Is this Physalia sp.?

Date 7 September 2003, Cape Range Nat. Park - Ningaloo Marine Park, Camp Kurrajong, by the seashore. The animals were pretty small (pneumatophore about 2 cm long), but their stinging cells were quite powerful, anyway :-)). How many Physalia species do exist - at least we know about them?

With best wishes
Monika Stambergova
Czech Republic

Stambergova, S., 2004 (Feb 13) Physalia from Western Australia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Monika,
Yes this is Physalia. I'm afraid the taxonomy of Physalia is outside my field of expertise. Some say the Atlantic species is different from the Indo-West Pacific but there doesn't seem to be any consensus. May be no-one has studied the question in any depth.
Best wishes

Rudman, W.B., 2004 (Feb 13). Comment on Physalia from Western Australia by Monika Stambergova. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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