Onchidoris sp.

Photo taken at Port Stephens, New South Wales, Australia
Photo courtesy of David Harasti

Onchidoris sp.

The Sand Onchidoris (Onchidoris sp.) is a very rare undescribed nudibranch species that was first discovered by the photographer in 2001 on a night dive in Port Stephens New South Wales Australia. It is believed that this species is endemic to Port Stephens as it is yet to be recorded elsewhere. This species has never been seen during the daytime and has only ever been found at night at two divesites (the Pipeline and Fly Point). It is believed that this species remains buried under the sand during the daytime as at night it has been observed emerging from the sand and has also been recorded burying itself when disturbed. Its body is yellow in colour and is covered in rough papillae. The rhinophores are very long and are the same colour as the body, as are its small gills. It is unknown what this species feeds on. The Sand Onchidoris (Onchidoris sp.) has been measured to a maximum length of approximately 2.5cm.

Dave Harasti
New South Wales, Australia
Mar. 2005

Dave with friends

Dave Harasti is a marine scientist who works on threatened marine species for New South Wales Fisheries. He has been diving for about 10 years and in that time he has developed a passion for marine life and underwater photography. Dave spends much of his time working on the conservation of threatened marine species, in particular the Grey Nurse Shark and seahorses.

His photography has been internationally recognized. He has recently won several major digital photography competitions including the Australsian Digital Photographer of the Year 2004.

He has been photographing the nudibranch species of the Fly Point Aquatic Reserve in Port Stephens Australia for the past 4 years. To date he has recorded 120 different species. They can be see here:


Dave's digital underwater system of choice is a Nikon Coolpix 5000 in an Ikelite housing with dual Ikelite DS125 strobes.

Dave's latest work is on the development of the 'International Marine Species Database' which can be viewed on his website . He has also just commenced his PhD on the effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas for seahorse conservation and is now diving on the Sports KISS Rebreather".

Send Dave email at info@daveharasti.com

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