Notodoris minor

Notodoris minor Eliot, 1904

This large, bright, aposematic colored species, while beautiful, does not follow the typical soft and delicate body style of most opisthobranchs. Its body is firm and rigid. A slow crawler, it often times looks more like a sponge than a dorid nudibranch.

Reaching more than 100 mm in length the bright yellow body has a few black lines and spots. Its large egg mass is the same yellow color. This species is found on reef crests and slopes to 20 m deep, where it feeds on the yellow calcareous sponge, Leucetta chagosensis Dendy, 1913 (see Coral Reef Animals of the Indo-Pacific, page 16, sp. # 3).

It is widely distributed from Tanzania; Oman to Australia; New Guinea; Indonesia; Philippines and Okinawa.

Photo courtesy of Mary Jane Adams of Arcadia, California:

These large, bright yellow nudibranchs are common in Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea and parts of the Solomon Islands. The first one I ever saw was brought up by another diver. While being handled, it was contracted and immobile and had a firm, rubbery feel like a piece of plastic. It wasn't unitl I found another one on the reef and noticed the gills and rhinophores that I realized it was a nudibranch. I have seen them many times since. Their bright color is easily spotted on coral reefs or rubble. I have sometimes seen them feeding on sponges. The eggs are the same bright yellow as the parents.

The picture at left of Mary was taken with a 44 cm long Spanish Dancer at Beqa Lagoon, Vitu Levu, Fiji. This nudibranch, accompanied by a slighly smaller one, were regulary seen grazing between two particular bommies.

Send Mary Jane mail at mjadams@earthlink

Taxonomic information courtesy of:

David W. Behrens

Author: Pacific Coast Nudibranchs
Co-Author Coral Reef Animals of the Indo Pacific
Propriator of Sea Challengers Natural History Books !

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