Aegires sp.

Photo courtesy of Francis Pellet
Lembeh Straits, Indonesia
Nikon D 200 with Nikkor 60 mm macro lens in Subal housing and Inon strobes
Est. size. 5-6 mm
Oct., 2008

This week's BOW comes by way of Francis and Pirjo Pellet of the Rhone Valley area of France. The Pellets are long time sea slug enthusiasts and are contributors not only to this site but also our forthcoming book! Pirjo reports that

"...The attached critter was found on a night dive at Nudi Retreat the 19th of Oct at a depth of 15 m by their German dive quide Ralf Muschel who is an excellent quide for nudibranchs.It's size was about 5-6 mm...."

Well, this week’s BOW expands the known geographic range reported in the NEW Indo-Pacific Nudibranchs and Sea Slugs before the book is even off the ship. Terry, Angel and I report this undescribed species only from Milne Bay in Papua New Guinea. In our first errata we can now add Lembeh Straits, Indonesia.

This distinctive species is pinkish purple with large rounded tubercles, which are yellow in color. The clavus of the rhinophore is a deeper purple.

We sure don't know much about this species accept that it is found on shallow rubble and muck bottoms. We suspect, that like other species of Aegires , it feeds on calcareous sponges. Known specimens reach about 6 mm in length.

Takes good eyes to find this guy.

Dave Behrens
Gig Harbor, Washington
Nov., 2008

Francis and Pirjo Pellet in the laboratory, Cerbere, July, 2005

It was a rainy morning at Lembeh so most of us were just hanging out on our boat waiting for the rain to subside. Suddenly a couple on a adjoining boat started jestering and jumping up and down trying to get our attention (my attention as it turned out). The male,my feeble memory couldn't bring back in time but the distinctive blue eyes of the female even with a hood on immediately triggered my memory. Those eyes could only belong to one person, Pirjo Pellet and that of course identified the male as Francis her husband. Francis and Pirjo are incredible slug hunters with Pirjo usually at point if she isn't carrying a camera. Anyhow, we compared notes on slugs found and as expected they had more than doubled my feeble count of 75 after seven days of diving. What can I say, that's the way it worked out but after seeing Pirjo in action at Cebere, France in the summer of 2005, their count didn't surprise me. Pirjo's eyes are only surpassed in their beauty by their ability to find slugs!

Francis and Pirjo have been busy coordinating the Cebere Sea Slug course for the past couple of years. Boy would I like to get back! Maybe in addition to seeing Francis and Pirjo again, I'll see you there!

Michael Miller
San Diego, Calif
Nov. 2008

Send Pirjo email at

From left to right, Terry Gosliner, Angle Valdes, Dave Behrens La Jolla, Calif.

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