Discodoris schmeltziana

Photo courtesy of Webmaster
Batangas, Philippines
May, 2001

Discodoris schmeltziana Bergh, 1877

This weeks BOW is a beautiful Discodoris from the Philippines and Japan. It was recently introduced in Atsushi Onoís new book Opisthobranchs of Ryukyu Islands on page 136 as his Discodoris sp. 2. Onoís photo may be the first presentation of this colorful dorid nudibranch in a popular publication. Mikeís make two.

Donít know much about the species but it is relatively common in the Philippine Archipelago. It is recognized by the ridge like hump down the center of the dorsum and the aggregation of tubercles on the notal surface, the center few of which are lavender or violet in color. Individuals may vary in background coloration from that seen above to lighter individuals, but the aggregation of lavender tubercles surrounded by yellow ones certainly gives it away.

Lets keep our eyes open for this beauty so we can extend its geographic range and learn more about its biology.

Dave Behrens
Danville, Calif
Aug., 2004

Webmaster, Atsushi Ono, and Jerry Allen
May 2002, Photo courtesy of Akiko Miyamoto

Atsushi Ono is the owner of a dive service on Zamami Island in the Keramas off Okinawa that caters mainly to Japanese Divers. Atsushi evidently relocated from a small town north of Tokyo some fifteen years ago to Zamami Island. He subseqeuntly started a diving service. In fact, the economy of Zamami Island seems to based entirely on diving! For those of you who don't speak Japanese that is not a problem communicating with Atusushi, his written english is very good! Atsushi has a passion that so many of us also share and that is the observation and study of sea slugs. Atsushi published a field guide "Opisthobranchs of Kerama Islands " a couple of years ago that excels in the macro photography of small Japanese slugs. The most recent book is even better. His books are a must for any of those considering travel to that area of the world. We spent many an evening with Atsushi back in 2002 sharing pictures and experiences with branches. His enthusiasm is very intense, one can feel it in both talking and diving with him! Atsushi has been a regular contributor to the Okinawa Slug Site maintained by Bob Bolland.

I feel so strongly about the Ono-san's dedication to the study of Opisthobranchs that he is going to receive my unqualified recommendation for anyone planning a branching trip to Okinawa. His operation is first class and can be totally focused on branching if you bring enough people.

You can drop Atsushi a note at ononini@cosmos.ne.jp

Taxonomic information courtesy of:

David W. Behrens

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

Send Dave mail at dave@seachallengers.com

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