Hypselodoris babai

Photo courtesy of Bob Bolland
Webmaster of the Okinawa Slug Site

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 this species.

Dave Behrens
Danville, Calif
Oct. 2000


Gosliner, Terrence M. and David W. Behrens. 2000. Two new species of Chromodorididae (Mollusca: Nudibranchia) from the tropical Indo-Pacific, with a redescription of Hypselodoris dollfusi (Pruvot-Fol, 1933). Proc. California Academy of Sciences. Vol. 52 (10): 111-124, 7 figs.

Taxonomic information courtesy of Dave Behrens

David W. Behrens

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

Send Dave mail at seachalleng@earthlink.net

© The Slug Site, Michael D. Miller , 2000. All Rights Reserved.