Phyllidia sp.

Image courtesy of David Cowdery
Photo taken Anilao, Batangas, Philippines
Phyllida exquisita

Phyllidia sp.

Dave Cowdery sent us an image of a specimen he had photographed in Anilao, Philippines. He commented that although some folks at the Nudibranch Festival said it was "obviously a Phyllida exquisita Brunckhorst, 1993," he did not agree and considered it unique, due to is more extensive yellow marginal band. Dave Behrens agreed that his specimen indeed looks different, and that we should call it Phyllidia sp. But he believes that more important than the yellow marginal line, "the major difference between his and P. exquisita are the multi-tuberculate notal tubercles. These almost look like those found on Phyllidia willani Brunckhorst, 1993, but the colors are reversed. Recall that this group of dorid nudibranchs has extreme variation within each species. Look at Phyllidia ocellata Cuvier, 1804," which is truly extreme in its variation!

For most of us, the pleasure of discovery is furthered with identification. So we look carefully at as many features as possible, always marveling at the spectacular or subtle differences in the colors, textures, and patterns of even closely-related, congeneric nudibranch species.

The vagaries of identifying members of the Phyllidia complex prompted the Webmaster to quit taking stills and video of this group years ago. Just too many variants and questions that follow!

Bill Rudman's Sea Slug Forum was used for back ground references!

Dave Behrens
Mike Miller
Oct., 2017
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David Cowdery

Dave Cowdery is a retired biomedical engineer and Divemaster at Byron Bay Australia. He has over 5000 logged dives. He is a keen participant in trips organized by Graham Abbott at Diving4Images and has dived the tropics extensively from Cocos Keeling Islands east to Niue. 3 Camera equipment used: D800 with DS160 substrobes

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

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