New York , NY
Velvet Sea Slug
Photograph - Photograph
The Velvet Sea Slug, Chelidonura varians, a nudibranch, is related to snails and slugs. It inhabits shallow water tropical reefs of the Indo-West Pacific. Among other food items, it eats flatworms. This species is capable of eating hydrozoans and prevents their stinging structures, nematocysts, from firing off their venom filled harpoons in the process. The unfired nematocysts are moved to the skin of the nudibranch where they are used as a defensive mechanism for the sea slug. This individual photographed November 2009.
June 13th, 2013
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