Hypselodoris babai Gosliner & Behrens, 2000
Several years ago Bob Bolland, while making his classical deep dives, started finding a beautiful little brown chromodorid at about 44 to 58 meters (that's right 170 something feet) in the waters off Seragaki, Okinawa. Bob shared specimens with us and we would have loved to have named this new species after him, but this was difficult since he all ready has two namesakes in this family, Chromodoris roboi, and Hypselodoris bollandi .
We have instead given the species the name Hypselodoris babai, in recognition of friend and colleague Dr. Kikutaro Baba. Dr. Baba has been an inspiration to both of us throughout our careers in opisthobranch systematics. For more than 70 years Dr. Baba has been carefully documenting the remarkable diversity of Japanese opisthobranchs, a truly remarkable achievement.
Hypselodoris babai reaches about 25 mm in length, and is currently known only from the locality of Seragaki. The body, which is the very typical, long and slender hypselodorid shaped, is opaque white with a rich red-brown central region. It has a series of long irregular oval white spots distributed over the mantle. It also has a wide white marginal band. The rhinophores are long and bright red in color, as is the gill plume.
This species is the same species presented on Bill Rudman's forum as
Chromodoris sp. 5. Although we don't necessarily suggested you all
rush out and drop to 170 feet to see if this beautiful species lives in your
neck of the woods, we do hope that others working in western Pacific will
keep their eyes open and help us add to the reported geographical range of
Taxonomic information courtesy of Dave Behrens
David W. Behrens
Pacific Coast Nudibranchs
Send Dave mail at firstname.lastname@example.org