| Phyllidiopsis cardinalis|
Courtesy of Dr. Terry Gosliner
Phyllidiopsis cardinalis Bergh, 1875
While the type species for the genus, the external appearence, especially coloration of Phyllidiopsis cardinalis is not typical of other members of the genus. I think it is one of the most spectacular phyllidiids a diver is likely to encounter. To my knowledge it is the only phyllidiid species with olive-green (to yellow basally) rhinophores.
The dorsum of this species displays a complex array of colors and patterns from yellow to orange and red, as well as olive and green hues, and even shades of purple!. It also has very large, multi-compound tubercles. The foot is yellow as are the fused oral tentacles. Some 16 species of Phylidiopsis have now been described, but there are undoubtedly more to discover. Happy phylidiid hunting!
Dr. David J. Brunckhorst
|Dr. David Brunckhorst|
Department of Ecosystem Management
Universtity of New England
Director, Institute for Bioregional Resource Management
Phone: (+61) (02) 6773 3001 Fax: (+61) (02) 6773 2769