Phyllidia carlsonhoffi

Courtesy of Douglas Hoffman

Phyllidia carlsonhoffi, Brunckhorst 1993

This phyllidiid nudibranch species is currently known from Micronesia, Papua new Guinea, Fiji and now Indonesia. It was named in honour of Clay Calson and Patty-Jo Hoff; two wonderful people who are the most professional of 'amateurs' with one of the best private slug collections, and undoubdtly the best 'backyard' (coral reef) on earth!

Phyllidia carlsonhoffi is charcterised by alternating large and very small tubercles which are isolated (not coalesced or joined by a ridge as in P. varicosa and P. coelestis). The tubercles have blue bases but are tipped in bright yellow. The rhinophores are also bright yellow. Ventrally, it also has remarkably long oral tentacles tipped in yellow and a black midline foot stripe (like P. varicosa). As in all phyllidiid nudibranchs, the gills are consist of rows of leaflets which are found ventrally, running longitudinally on both sides between mantle and foot. Phyllidia carlsonhoffi is superficially similar to P. madangensis - probably for the added protection of mimicing a like, badly-tasting, species (the phenomen of aposematism discussed previously by Terry Gosliner, Bill Rudman and myself). P. madangensis however lacks the foot stripe, does not have the alternating pattern of large and small tubercles, has short oral tentacles and substantial differences to the oral tube internally.

David Brunckhorst

Dr. David J. Brunckhorst
Director, Institute for Bioregional Resource Management
Division of Ecosystem Management
University of New England
Armidale NSW 2351

Send David mail at

Visit David's web page at Dave's Page
or Institute for Bioregional Resource Management

Douglas Hoffman and lovely wife Mieko in Micronesia.

Douglas is a successful photojournalist and video maker. He has won 15 international awards for photography and been published in American, Austrailian, Asian, Japanese, and Indonesian magazines. SDJ was the first Chinese diving magazine to publish his works.

Doug and Mieko are planning to open an E-6 processing service for underwater photographers in the Manado area on the northern tip of Sulawesi in Indonesia sometime in early '99. So if you happen to be in the area and aren't sure whether your TTL or strobes are doing the job, give Doug and Mieko a couple of test rolls to develop!!

Send Doug e mail at

Clay and Patty Jo at home in their "nudibranch" laboratory at Merizo, Guam. For those who have dove with Clay, you will know his passion is bubble shells. How he finds them is beyond this Webmaster. Judging from the camera equipped microscope as the backdrop, one has a better idea how Clay and Patty Jo are able to capture the unique morphology of bubble shells.

Send Clay mail at

© The Slug Site, Michael D. Miller 1999. All Rights Reserved.