Tethys fimbria Linnaeus

Image courtesy of Zeineb Alhaidari
Cros de Cagnes Parking du Moana, France
Est. size 20 cm

Tethys fimbria Linnaeus , Linnaeus, 1767

Members of the family Tethydidae, which include the genus Melibe, are without question one of the most ecologically interesting of all the nudibranchs - for a start, if we exclude vertebrate eggs, this is the only group that can feed on vertebrates, in this case fish larvae.

Tethys fimbria is no exception. Tethys fimbria is the only species in the genus. It is closely related genus Melibe, having a large oral hood, used in the capture of food, and large cerata down each side of the body. Specimens can grow to 300 mm in length. While both genera lack radula the main difference between Tethys and Melibe is that Tethys does not have stomach plates used in the digestion of food. Melibe does.

Otherwise the two genera both have a fringe of sensitive papillae along the edge of the oral hood which tell the animal when it has caught prey. Both have large smooth, flattened cerata which are easily cast-off (autotomized) when disturbed and both are great swimmers.

The coloration of Tethys fimbria is striking, being translucent white except for its large irregular blackish brown spots on the cerata, and sometimes on the edge of the oral hood and the foot.

This species ranges from the Mediterranean and east Atlantic coast from Portugal to the Gulf of Guinea.

Dave Behrens
Sammamish, WA 98074
Jun., 2015
Send Dave email at davidwbehrens@gmail.com

Zeineb Alhaidari
I am a veterinarian , specialized in dermatology , living in the south of France , on the Mediterranean seashore. I started diving end of 2001 , and realized it was a wonderful way to get away from stress. I became addicted , and developed an early interest in marine biology , this giving me "better eyes". I came to underwater photography with some reluctance two years ago , pushed by some fellows photographers , but I soon realized how nice it was to share what I had seen with friends , and that it was a more reliable way to describe the encounters than memory alone. I try whenever possible to combine my passion for diving with my passion for traveling . My camera is a Cannon G11 with an Inon D2000 strobe. I am still at the stage where I shoot at everything with enthusiasm , and I know that I have to work to improve my photographic skills , but now , I am hooked , and the Mediterranean sea , which is my backyard is an absolutely wonderful and endless game field. I have joined a small association of UW photographs named Les Aquanautes (www.lesaquanautes.eu/)during the past six (6) years I have been taking underwater photos.

Send Zeineb email at z.alhaidari@wanadoo.fr


Zeineb is not a newcomer to the site having previously contributed to BOW 671 (Halgerda Okinawa). I for one am certainly looking forward to more of her images from the Mediterrean!

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

Send Dave email at dave@seachallengers.com

© The Slug Site, Michael D. Miller 2009. All Rights Reserved.