Acanthodoris brunnea

Photo courtesy of Steve Gardner
Photo taken at La Jolla Shores, San Diego, Calif

Acanthodoris brunnea MacFarland 1905

This is not a really common species along the California coast, but in recent weeks it seems that the genus Acanthodoris has had a family reunion in the San Diego area where Steve captured this photo. See the Sea Slug Forum for three of the other species of this genus observed by Kevin Lee, in the same location as this.

For four species of a single genus to be in abundance at the same time is an indication that food resources must be optimal.

Acanthodorids are bryozoan feeders. All members o the genus have very long rhinophores by comparison to most dorid nudibranchs, and tall conical notal papillae. Species of Acanthodoris differ externally in notal coloration.

While we cannot see this species food in Steveís photo, we can clearly see itís egg ribbon being laid.

Great shot Steve!

Dave Behrens
Gig Harbor, Washington
Sept., 2006

Steve Gardner
Photo courtesy of Terry Strait

It takes a person of stout heart and soul to hit the water in all the gear that Steve has on and Steve fits the bill in all respects. Known for years as "bumble bee" (and still known) in recognition of his traditional yellow and black wet suits that became his trademark. When I first met Steve at a San Diego Underwater Photographic Society meeting in the early 80's, he was already into branchs and conservation of our precious underwater habitats. I would be hard pressed to name anyone with more logged dives at La Jolla Shores than Steve. To many the shores has simply become Steve's "backyard!"

Steve has had his own page on the Slug Site since 1999! If you have a few moments, hit the link and go diving the shores with Steve! It will be well worth your time!

Steve is well known in San Diego diving circles for his dedication to preserving our underwater fauna and promoting safe diving. On any given Saturday or Sunday morning at the shores, just ask for bumble bee and everyone will point the way! Steve dives in a dry suit now but the name recognition is still there!

Our hats are off to you Steve!

Send Steve email at

Michael D. Miller
San Diego, Calif
Sept. 2006

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
March 2005

Ali Hermosillo and Dave Behrens

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

Send Dave mail at

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