Armina variolosa

Image courtesy of Peri Paleracio
Anilao, Philippines

Armina variolosa (Bergh, 1904)

There are many species of arminids (Arminidae Iredale & O'Donoghue, 1923) found in the Indo-Pacific tropics. Most are in the genera Armina and Dermatobranchus and have a series of longitudinal ridges on the body. Species of Arminidae are commonly found on soft sandy bottoms, from shallow waters down to great depths. They feed on soft corals and sea pens using their jaws and radula to bite off pieces of flesh.

When the new edition of Nudibranchs and Sea Slugs - Indo-Pacific hits the streets this fall, it will contain 19 new species of Armina and 14 new Dermatobranchus. These are of course in addition to the dozens of described species.

In this species the ridges are made up of longitudinal, irregular rows of rounded tubercles each with a white apex. The rhinophores are narrow, and reddish with white tips. The foot is wide, with a white edge. This curious species grazes on sandy and mud bottoms, in depths of 7-20 m. For additional photos of this species from Japan (Thanks is due to Terry Gosliner for providing link!)

This critter reaches 50 mm in length and has been documented from Japan, Hong Kong (China), and the Philippines.

Dave Behrens
Sammamish, WA 98074
Apr., 2015
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Peri Paleracio , and my life long diving buddy Jerry Allen relaxing between dives
Club Ocellaris, May 2006

Peri has been acting as a dive guide in the Philippines for about twenty (20) years now. When Peri's not diving, he does Wedding Photography on the side. Peri ranks very high on my list of dive guides in the PI that can find seldom seen sea slugs. As you can see from the above image, Peri is an excellent photographer (even when using someone else's equipment). Peri is very good at recognizing and capturing the scene so as to say. Last April while relaxing on the veranda at Club Ocellaris, I noticed Peri go get his camera and wade out into the water to photograph one of the staff fishing. I wondered what was going on and then I saw what Peri was after and I ran and got my Sony HD Camcorder and took video of Peri photograhping the fisherman against a setting sun. This footage was later blended into a video on sea slugs that made the final cut into our San Diego Underwater Photographic Society film festival a couple of years ago! Imagine that! Slugs are coming into their own for sure!

When not looking for slugs, Peri also keeps his eyes peeled for other unusal inhabitants of the sea. More recently he has had an eel (Myrichthys paleracio ) named after him! An honor richly deserved!

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Peri also has website for Wedding Photography if you are considering getting married in the Philippines!

Michael Miller
San Diego, Calif
Apr., 2015

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

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