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Spotted Sea Hare

Aplysia dactylomela

1 Species ID Suggestions

spotted sea hare
Aplysia dactylomela Aplysia dactylomela

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MariosLiogris 7 years ago

Hi Laura Maria, thanks for your amazing answer! There was another one close to this one. They were in a small pool formed on the rocks, my guess is that they were trapped there when the sea level went down. So, I have a couple of questions! Do you have a guess about how they were introduced in the Meditteranean? And do they pose a threat to the local ecosystem?

LauraMaria 7 years ago

Hi Marios, this is a sea hare, a kind of marine mollusc that is kind of between a snail and a slug. This particular species is Aplysia dactylomela, a tropical species native to the southern hemisphere, but was recently introduced to the Med Sea in around 2002. This one here doesn't look very healthy, but they are a VERY variable creature, so it could be down to diet. The Wikipedia article doesn't mention anything about their invasive status in the Med, but there are plenty of research papers out there about it, like this one: Very cool find indeed!

Spotted by

Αμμόχωστος - Mağusa, Cyprus

Spotted on Aug 19, 2013
Submitted on Aug 20, 2013

Spotted for Mission

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