Known from Alaska to Panama and the Galapagos (Behrens & Hermisillo, 2005; Camacho-Garcia, et al. 2005). Reported here from Peter the Great Bay, Russia.
UPPER: La Jolla Shores, San Diego County, southern California. Brown colour form, laying egg ribbon. Photo: Steve Gardner.
LOWER: Peter the Great Bay, nr Vladisvostok, Russia. Photo: Valeri Darkin.
Translucent white with opaque white spots on mantle, oral veil and foot. Edge of mantle and foot with an opaque white line. In San Diego region, California there is a colour variety with a brownish background colour.
• Gosliner, T.M. & Bertsch, H. (1988). A review of the genus Berthella (Opisthobranchia: Notaspidea) from the Pacific Coast of North America. The Veliger, 31: 46-67.
Rudman, W.B., 2001 (January 15) Berthella californica (Dall, 1900). [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/bertcali
December 3, 2007
From: Dong Bum Koh
Here is a photo of Berthella californica from East Sea of Korea.
Locality: Gang Reung City, 15m, Gang Won Province, East Sea, 25 Nov. 2007. Length: 55mm. Photographer: Hong Soo Kim.
Dong Bum Koh
email@example.comD.B.Koh, 2007 (Dec 3) Berthella californica from South Korea. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/21222
This is a very interesting find. With the earlier record on the Forum from near Vladisvostok [#3533], it certainly establishes the presence of this species in the western part of the East Sea [= Sea of Japan]. Considering the many studies that have been published from the region, it is surprising that there seems to be no records of this species, under any name, from the west coast of Japan
July 7, 2007
From: Jackie Hildering & Glen Miller
Glen and I found two different groups of Berthella californica with the clustering behaviour that we previously assumed was mating. Convenient now that both clusters had egg masses next to them. Mating indeed and another "Whose egg masses are those?" issue solved for us.
Locality: Bear Cove - Port Hardy, 35 feet, British Columbia, Canada, Pacific Ocean, 19 April 2007, Wall. Length: +/- 5 cm. Photographer: Jackie Hildering.
Hildering, J. & Miller, G., 2007 (Jul 7) Berthella californica - mating & egg-laying. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/20109
Dear Jackie and Glen,
Wow the Pacific NW folks have been busy lately.
Great observations. In the top photo, the juxtapostion of the three animals, precludes mating, which is surely what is going on in the bottom photo.
The egg masses are definitely those of Berthella californica. Nice undulating white ribbons, attached to the substrate on one edge.
Keep up the good work,
March 26, 2007
From: Jacqui Engel
In our dives this last week on Northern Vancouver Island, we have seen several Berthella californica clustering such as those pictured here. Thought this apparent mating behaviour might be of interest.
Locality: Bear Cove - Port Hardy, Northern Vancouver Island, 35 feet, British Columbia, Canada, Pacific Ocean, 20 March 2007, wall. Length: +/- 5 cm. Photographer: Jacqui Engel.
firstname.lastname@example.orgEngel, Jacqui, 2007 (Mar 26) Berthella californica from British Columbia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/19737
Wow, I don't think I have ever seen so many specimens aggregating together. Pretty neat. I guess we can assume they are mating, but since I cannot determine if they are juxtiposed right side to right side, we cannot say for sure. The group does resemble the photo in Lamb & Hanby (2005)
Thanks for sharing this,,
March 2, 2006
From: Marli Wakeling
Several weeks ago we found lots of Berthella californica up on the Sechelt Penninsula. They were larger than we usually see.
Locality: Fearnie Bluffs, Agamemnon Channel, 40 feet, British Columbia, Canada, Pacific, 11 February 2006, Rocky wall. Length: 6 cm. Photographer: Marli Wakeling.
email@example.comWakeling, M., 2006 (Mar 2) Berthella californica from British Columbia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/15971
Thanks for sharing this. Great observation. Bill has included a close-up of the anterior portion of the body showing the details of the foot corner, oral veil, and tubular rhinophores.
The geographic range of this species is now extended southward to Panama and the Galapagos (Behrens & Hermsillo, 2005; Camacho-Garcia, et al. 2005).
Behrens, D.W. & A. Hermosillo. 2005. Eastern Pacific Nudibranchs - A guide to the opisthobranchs from Alaska to Central America. Sea Challengers. 137 pp.
- Camacho-Garcia, Gosliner and Valdes. 2005. Field Guide to the Sea Slugs of the Tropical Eastern Pacific. California Academy of Sciences. 129 pp.
November 7, 2005
From: Marli Wakeling
Here's a Berthella californica from Campbell River, British Columbia, among corallimorphs known as Strawberry anemones (Corynactis californica).
Locality: Copper Cliffs, Campbell River, British Columbia, Canada. Pacific coast. Depth: 40 feet. Length: 30 mm. 10 October 2005. Rocky Wall. Photographer: Marli Wakeling
firstname.lastname@example.orgWakeling, M., 2005 (Nov 7) Berthella californica from British Columbia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/15179
Thanks for this photo. We now have a photos of this species from throughout its known geographic distribution, showing its variability in colour.
August 2, 2004
From: Bruce Wight
Here is a photo of Berthella californica from our trip to San Miguel Island over the weekend [July 2004] with the SDUPS. Water clarity was poor, but the place was loaded as always with branchs.
email@example.comWight, B.C., 2004 (Aug 2) Berthella californica from California. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/12720
It's good to see the colour variability - or at least the variability in the distribution of the white spots (which are almost certainly defensive glands) on the mantle - in this species.
March 26, 2004
From: Jackie Hildering and Glen Miller
Hello Dr. Rudman,
I will be sending a series of images since we had an astounding dive in which we saw 16 species of nudibranch on one shore dive.
I believe these two are Berthella californica. The upper one is on a piece of the kelp Agarum fimbriatum. Could you please confirm?
Dive: Bear Cove, Northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada
Photographer: Glen Miller
Date: March 21st, 2004
firstname.lastname@example.orgHildering, J. & Miller, G., 2004 (Mar 26) Berthella californica in British Columbia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/12532
Dear Jackie and Glen,
I am sure your identification is correct. In the upper photo you can see traces of the two rhinophores and the oral veil so it definitely a pleurobranch
August 8, 2002
From: Bruce Wight
Here is another slug we found on our recent trip to San Miguel Island, California [July 2002].
email@example.comWight. B., 2002 (Aug 8) Berthella from San Miguel, California. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/7710
Thanks for this photo of Berthella californica. The flattened internal shell in species of Berthella is much larger than in the related genus Berthellina and can be seen in this photo as the faint white 'shadow' which occupies the central half of the dorsum. The smaller more intense whitish mass within the shell boundary, is the visceral mass.
January 21, 2001
From: Juan Lucas Cervera
firstname.lastname@example.orgCervera, J.L., 2001 (Jan 21) Re: Pleurobranch from Russian Pacific. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/3578
Thanks for the confirmation
January 18, 2001
From: Dave Behrens
Your question concerning the white spots on the body of Berthella californica is a good one. I hope my colleagues on this coast agree with me. My observations have been that smaller specimens seem to have fewer, larger spots, proportionately than larger specimens. The Russian specimen's body proportions suggest that it is smaller individual, than the La Jolla specimen. The latter is a large animal, maybe 7-8 cm in length, or larger. Animals this size appear to have smaller, but more numerous spots.
Dave@seachallengers.comBehrens, D., 2001 (Jan 18) Re: Berthella californica. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/3561
January 17, 2001
From: Dave Behrens
Without the specimen in hand, I must agree with your identification that Val's photo is indeed a Berthella californica(Dall, 1900). I think it is just a matter of time before we hear about more temperate Pacific species occurring in the less studied Russian waters. Val's photo is most typical of this species.
I have attached a photo of a specimen with egg mass, taken by Steve Gardner, at La Jolla Shores, San Diego County in southern California. In the San Diego area we often find specimens of Berthella californica with a light brown notal color. The white specks and marginal edge are always consistent, however.
This is truly a valuable extension of this species geographical range.
Dave@seachallengers.comBehrens, D., 2001 (Jan 17) Re: Berthella californica from Russia. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/3536
Thanks for the confirmation. What about the size of the white spots? Are they variable? They seem a lot larger and more sparsely placed in the Russian animal.
January 17, 2001
From: Bill Rudman
I forgot to mention in my reply to Val concerning his Russian pleurobranch, that there are photos showing the difference between the gills of Berthella and Pleurobranchus in an earlier message on the Forum.
January 16, 2001
From: Valeri Darkin
I would like to ask for your help to identify this species of slug photographed in the Bay of Peter the Great near Vladivostok, Russian Pacific Coast. Depth was 5 meters, on mussel bed.
If you have any idea what is the latin name of this Slug, please, let me know. I will be overseas traveling January 23 - February 25, 2001 for dive convention (DEMA Show).
MR. Valeri (Val) Darkin
Diving Instructor, Marine Biologist, U/W Photographer, Videographer, Shell collector Conus darkini may ring the bell).
email@example.comDarkin, V., 2001 (Jan 16) Pleurobranch from Russian Pacific. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/3533
This is a most interesting find. It is a pleurobranch (Order Notaspidea), commonly called 'Side-gilled Slugs' because their single gill lies on the right side of the body below the mantle skirt. If you have a look at the species in the Order Notaspidea in the Species List you will get some idea of the variation. Have a look at Pleurobranchus forskalii for a good photo of the gill.
Your species is most likely a species of Pleurobranchus or Berthella but we would need to look at its anatomy to be sure. Unformtunately the only external character between the two genera concerns the shape of the gill (species of Pleurobranchus have tubercles) but unfortunately we can't see that in a photo either.
Your animal looks very much like Berthella californica (Dall, 1900) which is found from Alaska to Baja California in Mexico. That species is the only one I know of that has white raised spots on the mantle and foot, and a white edge as in your animal. I guess it would not be the first Alaskan species found on the Pacific coast of Russia. If it is that species I would think it is a rather interesting new record.
I am sure my North American colleagues can give us a better idea on the likelihood of your specimen being the same species.
I look forward to you sending us some more interesting photos from your part of th world.