OKINAWAN
OPISTHOBRANCH OF THE WEEK

Siphopteron tigrinum Gosliner, 1989 (5mm)

Opisthobranch of the Week Data

Taxonomy:

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


Species Account:

        Gosliner (1989) described this beautiful little cephalaspid from material collected originally from Papua New Guinea in 1986. Okinawan specimens are usually pigmented with a ground color of bright orange, overlain with narrow, elongated patches of blue; this distinctive color pattern is the basis for the specific name of the "tiger-appearing" animals. Occasionally, local animals are found with muted colors as the featured animal above exhibits; more commonly, the color patterns and color intensity are in line with Gosliner's original description.

        A total of sixty-six specimens have been collected here since the first one was found during May of 1991, but the populations densities of these animals are quite variable. During some years the animals are not seen at all; at other times their concentrations make them the most common component of the opisthobranch fauna [e.g., during late March and early April of 1993, on two separate dives, sixteen animals each were collected from the same locality].

        Siphopteron tigrinum is one of nine described species of Siphopteron currently found in Okinawan waters. The nine described species are:

        In addition to the above nine described species I've collected several undescribed species as well.

Literature Cited:


Page Date: 07 Dec '98
Page Modification Date: 19 Jul '04
Digitally manipulated photo
Copyright © 2004 Robert F. Bolland