Feeding ecology of Volvatella

May 28, 2000
From: Edwin Cruz-Rivera

Hello all,
I am looking for information on the genus Volvatella. In particular, I am interested in papers dealing with feeding preferences of different species, reproductive biology (reproductive anatomy included), and chemical ecology of the critters. I am aware of only one paper on this last subject done by Cimino's group in Italy, and published in 1999.

In Guam, some species of Volvatella recruit in large numbers ever so often, but I have not found any articles documenting this here or elsewhere. I am currently working on some aspects of the feeding and chemical ecology of V. pyriformis (a specialist on Caulerpa sertularioides)and would greatly appreciate information on this or other related species. Your input is most valuable.



University of Guam Marine Laboratory
UOG Station
Mangilao, GU 96923


Cruz-Rivera, E., 2000 (May 28) Feeding ecology of Volvatella. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/2460

Dear Edwin,
I have listed below some references which get you into the literature. I am sure there is also relevant literature on the similarly shelled Oxynoe as well. I am sure Kathe Jensen and Cynthia Trowbridge should be able to suggest more.

Any background natural history information on Volvatella in Guam, and if possible, photos of it and its food would be very welcome.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman.

• Clark, K.B. & Busacca, M (1978) Feeding specificity and chloroplast retention in four tropical ascoglossa, with a discussion of the extent of chloroplast symbiosis and the evolution of the order. J. Moll. Stud. 44: 272-282,Figs1-3.
• Clark, K.B. & DeFreese, D. (1987) Population ecology of Caribbean ascoglossa (Mollusca: Opisthobranchia): a study of specialized algal herbivores. Am. Malacol. Union Bull. 5(2): 259-280.
• Jensen, K.R. & Wells, F.E. (1990) Sacoglossa (= Ascoglossa) (Mollusca, Opisthobranchia) from southern Western Australia. In: Wells, F.E., Walker, D.I., Kirkman, H. & Lethbridge, R. Proceedings of the Third International Marine Biological Workshop: The Marine Flora and Fauna of Albany, Western Australia. Western Australian Museum, Perth, Vol. 1: 297-331.
• Jensen, K.R. (1981) Observations on feeding methods in some Florida ascoglossans. J. Moll. Stud. 47: 190-199.
• Jensen, K.R. (1983) Factors affecting feeding selectivity in herbivorous ascoglossa (Mollusca: Opisthobranchia). J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol., 66: 135-148.
• Jensen, K.R. (1992): Evolution of buccal apparatus and diet radiation in the Sacoglossa (Opisthobranchia). Abstracts, 11th International Malacological Congress, Siena 1992: 280-281.
• Thompson,T.E. (1979) Biology and relationships of the South African sacoglossan mollusc Volvatella laguncula. Journal of Zoology, London, 189(3): 339-347
• Trowbridge, C.D. (1991) Group membership facilitates feeding of the herbivorous sea slug Placida dendritica. Ecology, 72(6): 2193-2203.
• Trowbridge, C.D. (1992) Mesoherbivory: the ascoglossan sea slug Placida dendritica may contribute to the restricted distribution of its algal host. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 83(16 July): 207-220.
• Trowbridge, C.D. (1993) Local and regional abundance patterns of the Ascoglossan (=Sacoglossan) Opisthobranch Alderia modesta (Loven, 1844) in the Northeastern Pacific. The Veliger 36(4): 303-310.
• Trowbridge, C.D. (1994) Defensive Responses and palatability of specialist herbivores: predation on NE Pacific ascoglossan gastropods. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 105: 61-70.
• Jensen, K.R. (1994) Behavioural adaptations and diet specificity of sacoglossan opisthobranchs. Ethology, Ecology & Evolution, 6: 87-101.
• Gavagnin, M; Marin, A; Castelluccio, F; Villani, G; Cimino, G (1994) Defensive realtionships between Caulerpa prolifera and its shelled sacoglossan predators. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol., 175: 197-210.

Rudman, W.B., 2000 (May 28). Comment on Feeding ecology of Volvatella by Edwin Cruz-Rivera. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/2460

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  1. Re: Feeding ecology of Volvatella
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