Re: Splanchnotrophus brevipes from The Netherlands

August 17, 2007
From: Marco Faasse

Concerning message #20171:

Dear Bill,
In reply to your comment on my message about Splanchnotrophus:

Those purple egg sacs from the Mediterranean on the Sea Slug Forum you mentioned are very interesting. When searching the internet for Splanchnotrophus images I only found white egg sacs from Spain.

I identified this Splanchnotrophus with Gotto's (1993) book Commensal and parasitic copepods associated with marine invertebrates (and whales) [Synopsis of the British Fauna no. 46]. This book covers the Northeast Atlantic south to southern Brittany, well south of The Netherlands. Gotto (1993) mentions only two Splanchnotrophus species, S. brevipes and S. gracilis. The specimens I have in my collection definitely don't belong to S. gracilis. However, I can't rule out the possibility that they belong to a species unrecorded from our area or even an undescribed species. That precisely was one of the main reasons to post this message on the Sea Slug Forum. I have to say that the specimens found in Cuthona concinna [see photo] were smaller, which may be induced be the smaller size of this host in comparison with Aeolidiella glauca, and that their egg sacs were white. Specimens in both host species were found in April 2007, while Splanchnotrophus has never been recorded from The Netherlands before. To resolve this matter specimens with rose-coloured and purple egg masses would have to be studied more in detail.

Kind regards,
Marco Faasse

Faasse, M., 2007 (Aug 17) Re: Splanchnotrophus brevipes from The Netherlands. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Marco,
Thanks for clarifying how you identified the copepods. I haven't been that good at keeping the list on the parasite page up to date but if you do a search for copepod on the Forum you will find a few more records, including Cratena peregrina and more Spurilla neapolitana from the Mediterranean.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Rudman, W.B., 2007 (Aug 17). Comment on Re: Splanchnotrophus brevipes from The Netherlands by Marco Faasse. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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