OKINAWAN
OPISTHOBRANCH OF THE WEEK

Caloria indica (Bergh, 1896) 16mm

Opisthobranch of the Week Data

Taxonomy:

Frequency on Okinawa:
Collection Data:
[brackets indicate range for all Okinawa-collected specimens of the species]


Species Account:

        Caloria indica is considered to be uncommon on Okinawa as I have collected a total of 13 individuals; the first specimen was found on the 29th of May, 1984. The above featured animal was found, in addition to eight other individuals of the species collected on the same dive (the largest of the nine was 16mm, the smallest was 4mm), during a daytime SCUBA excursion, under high tide conditions. All nine of the specimens collected on this date were found crawling on concrete pier supports which were heavily covered with various hydroids, poriferans, bivalves, bryozoans, as well as others. Several of the animals were collected in near proximity to each other, others were found alone. Gosliner et al (1996) say that Caloria indica feed on hydroids of the genus Eudendrium and upon Pennaria disticha. I was unable to observe the feeding substrate, but the pier supports have dense colonies of Pennaria species present.

        There is no universal agreement as to the correct generic placement of this attractive aeolid. The species has been placed by various authors into several related genera, including Facelina, Hervia, Learchis, and Phidiana. Rudman (1999) points out that the correct generic placement of the species cannot be resolved at present.

        I have quite a few very similar appearing facelinid aeolids in the Okinawan material, but currently unable to confirm their status; they may well represent undescribed species.

Literature Cited:


Copyright © 1999 Robert F. Bolland
Digitally manipulated photo