Histiomena convolvula

Histiomena convolvula (Lance, 1962)

This spectacularly colored arminid was originally named by James Lance, based on specimens collected "at the lower edge of the intertidal area" by Alan and Faye Wolfson, 15 miles south of San Felipe, in the northern Gulf of California. Since then it has been reported from Bahia de los Angeles, Baja California, and Bahia San Carlos, Sonora (Poorman & Poorman, 1978; Bertsch & Kertstitch, 1984).

Large individuals can reach 75 mm in lenghth. The dorsum bears convoluted, brown and white mottled ridges. The bright pink foot is bordered by a thin white line, a broader orange band, and an inner opalescent blue-white line. Despite its flamboyance, the animal can be cryptic at depth, among downed gorgonians on the sand.

The animal eats various species of gorgonians and the sea pen Ptilosarcus. In the original 1984 report of its feeding preference, my UW photograph showed the animal stretched along the length of a gorgonian branch, with the anterior fifth of its body bent forward and downwards, consuming the Muricea prey.

My unpublished data on 15+ years of investigations at Bahia de los Angeles show that Histiomena convolvula has an annual cycle, with no adults having been observed between June-September.

Text and Photo courtesy of:

Dr. Hans Bertsch

192 Imperial Beach Blvd. #A
Imperial Beach, CA 91932
FAX (619) 423-9118
Send Hans E-Mail at hansmarvida@cox.net

For those of you interested in the photographic background information of the images, the following may be of interest!
Camera System: Tussey T-300 underwater housing with FM2/Nikon 60mm lens.

Strobe: Ikelite Ai

Film: Kodak ASA 100 Print Film

Site: Bahia de los Angeles, Baja California

Photo Editing: PhotoStyler 2.0 on 486 DX-2 33 mhz/ 64 megs RAM

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