Ortea & Espinosa, 1996
Caribbean, tropical west Atlantic
Lark Cay, Belize. Note yellow egg ribbon. Photo: Jaff Hamann.
A relatively elongate species of Elysia ranging in colour from green to a yellowish green with a pattern of pale longitudinal lines all over body and parapodia. Sometimes the lines are accentuated by the presence of alternating vrown lines. Scattered over the parapodia are raised, unbranched, whitish papillae. Along the parapodial margin the papillae appear as a series of white swellings visible inside and out. The rest of the inside of the parapodia is dark green. There is a black line along the parapodial margin. Grows to about 20mm long. Colin Redfern (2001) notes that the late Kerry Clark considered this species to be a colour form of Elysia subornata Verrill, 1901.
• Ortea, J. & Espinosa, J. 1996. Descripcion de una nueva especie del genero Elysia Risso, 1818 (Opisthobranchia: Sacoglosa) recolectada en Puerto Morelos, Mexico. Avicennia, 1996, 4/5: 115-119.
• Redfern, C. 2001. Bahamian Seashells: A Thousand Species from Abaco, Bahamas. Bahamianseashells.com, Inc: Boca Raton, Florida. x + 280 pp., 124 pls. [Plate 116, fig. 675]
Rudman, W.B., 2002 (January 20) Elysia pratensis Ortea & Espinosa, 1996. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/elysprat
June 25, 2007
From: Jim Chambers
While diving on Little Cayman, British West Indies (Caribbean Sea) on May 27, 2006, I saw a single Elysia pratensis on the sand at a depth of about 12-14 meters. It was about 25-30 mm in size, as nearly as I can recall. This was the only one I saw during two weeks of diving. Since I don't see this species reported in Little Cayman, I thought I would submit it to you.
firstname.lastname@example.orgChambers, J., 2007 (Jun 25) Elysia pratensis from the West Indies. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/20037
So little is published about these Caribbean animals, that every new bit of information is valuable.
December 16, 2005
From: Les Wilk
Here's a specimen of Elysia pratensis from Honduras.
Locality: Utila Island, Honduras, Caribbean. Depth: 30 feet. Length: 0.75 inch. July 2000. eelgrass. Photographer: Keri Wilk
email@example.comWilk, L., 2005 (Dec 16) Elysia pratensis from Utila (Honduras). [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/15476
This appears to be one of the most reliable species of Elysia in the Caribbean - as far as its external form and colour pattern goes. The black longitudinal lines, including one along the edge of the parapodia, the rounded swellings along the edge of the parapodia - especially on the inside, and the scattered white papillae on the outside of the parapodia seem to be constant characters of ths species.
February 23, 2004
From: Marina Poddubetskaia
After my week with Anne DuPont in the Southern Bahamas, I had a diving cruise in the Northern Bahamas. And I found there another elysiid: is it Elysia pratensis? I have seen only one specimen of this species and it was found crawling on the sand with many algae all around.
Date: February 09, 2004
Location: Bimini Islands, Bahamas, Western Atlantic
Site: South Cat Cay
Size : 8mm
firstname.lastname@example.orgPoddubetskaia, M., 2004 (Feb 23) Elysia pratensis from Northern Bahamas. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/12268
It is good to get these photos of Caribbean elysiids. It will certainly help future workers to identify them. I agree that this is Elysia pratensis.
October 10, 2002
From: Dave Behrens
Here is a nice photo of Elysia pratensis Ortea & Espinosa, 1996. This species is very common in Belize. This photo was taken by Jaff Hamann at Lark Cay. Note yellow egg ribbon.
Behrens, D., 2002 (Oct 10) Elysia pratensis from Belize. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/8143
With their often large populations, elysiids and other sacoglossans are of great interest to ecologists, and their habit of 'stealing' plant organelles for their own use has made them of special interest to plant physiologists. It is unfortunate then that the difficulty in identifying species is such an impediment to these studies. Hopefully, good identified photos, such as this one, will make the job of ecologists and physiologists a little easier.
January 22, 2002
From: Colin Redfern
Dear Kathe & Bill,
To continue the discussion here are dorsal and ventral photos of a 14 mm specimen of Elysia pratensis from the island of Abaco, in the north-eastern Bahamas. The specimen was collected on July 6, 1991 by pulling a dredge through a Thalassia bed in 2.5 m on the lee side of Whale Cay, Abaco. Other specimens, the largest reaching 21 mm in length, have been collected in similar fashion from the same area.
I hope that these photos are useful.
email@example.comRedfern, C., 2002 (Jan 22) Re: Elysia from Florida. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/6048
Your photos and information are very useful,