Berthella martensi - feeding observation

April 30, 1999
From: Clay Bryce

Hi Bill,
Following on my message about Pleurobranchus forskalii. I have pics of Berthella martensi feeding at night on a sponge. [Ashmore Reef, Kimberleys, north western Australia]


Clay Bryce
W.A. Museum

Bryce, C., 1999 (Apr 30) Berthella martensi - feeding observation. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Clay,
If you get the chance, it would be nice to have a scan of your photo to put on the Forum. To my knowledge, your record about this species feeding on sponges is the first time we have had any information on the food of Berthella martensi. Berthella plumula and some Mediterranean species are reported by European workers to feed on the sponge Oscarella lobularis and Richard Willan has reported finding sponge spicules in the faeces of two New Zealand species. A good review of pleurobranch diets is:

Willan, R.C. (1984). A review of diets in the Notaspidea (Mollusca: Opisthobranchia). Journal of the Malacological Society of Australia, 6(3): 125-142.

Bill Rudman.

Rudman, W.B., 1999 (Apr 30). Comment on Berthella martensi - feeding observation by Clay Bryce. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from


Berthella martensi

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