Phyllidiopsis loricata (Bergh, 1873)

Phyllidiopsis loricata has the same basic color pattern of dark black spots on a white animal as Phyllidia scottjohnsoni. While there are other anatomical details that separate them, the easiest one is the presence of a row of black spots long the middorsal line in P. scottjohnsoni that is never seen in P. loricata. Specimens of P. loricata seen here, on Sea Slugs of Hawaii, and the Sea Slug Forum all show animals with much darker spots than those we have identified as this species from the Marshall Islands. Perhaps there are multiple species hiding behind a similar color pattern. We recorded a total of six specimens around Oahu, two each from Makua, Pupukea, and Haleiwa. It is possible the two from Haleiwa, which we did not photograph, were P. scottjohnsoni.

Links:
Sea Slugs of Hawaii
Sea Slug Forum

Created 20 April 2009

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