Syphonata geographica mating

February 25, 2008
From: Leanne & David Atkinson

Hi Bill,
We found these Syphonata geographica in an aggregation. We counted three at the time but it is harder to see each of the individuals in the photos. Is the one on top in a mating position? They are covered in sand grains perhaps they recently emerged from the sand. This was early in the morning. Perhaps they sleep under the sand and emerge during the day. We also saw eggs beside them and will send a second message [#21227] with more egg photos.

Locality: Fly Point, Port Stephens - Great Lakes Marine Park, Port Stephens, 8 metres, New South Wales, Australia, Pacific, 24 November 2007, Sandy bottom scattered sponges, ascidians, gorgonians and seagrass. Length: approximately 120 mm. Photographer: Leanne & David Atkinson

Regards,
Leanne & David Atkinson

atk@hunterlink.net.au

Atkinson, L. & D., 2008 (Feb 25) Syphonata geographica mating. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/21226

Dear Leanne & David,

I can't be sure they are mating but usually when sea hares are found crawling over each other like this there is bound to be some mating activity taking place. Thanks for the suggestion that they may be burying in the sand at night. Certainly the covering of sand would suggest as much - or at least that they have been 'ploughing' through the sand.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Rudman, W.B., 2008 (Feb 25). Comment on Syphonata geographica mating by Leanne & David Atkinson. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/21226

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