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Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

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Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

Post by Dragon on Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:45 pm

A small team of scientists at The University of Western Australia, the Western Australian Museum, and the California Academy of Sciences has identified 18 new species of sea slugs, including some only found in WA.

Chromodoris nudibranchs or sea slugs occur across the Indo-Pacific and are very brightly coloured, with their colour patterns traditionally used to differentiate between species.

However, new research from Kara Layton and Dr. Nerida Wilson from UWA and the Western Australian Museum and Dr. Terry Gosliner from the California Academy of Sciences suggests colour patterns are not reliable indicators for species identification, with some species actually found to mimic other already recognised species.

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Re: Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

Post by Dragon on Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:46 pm



Thousands of feet below the Pacific Ocean’s surface, a deep sea-exploring robot spotted some unusual marine life 900 miles west of Hawaii.

At 8,380 feet below sea level, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration robot spotted a never-before-seen snailfish that, scientists say, is likely a new species. A tiny Hydrozoan jellyfish was also observed feasting on bamboo corals.

But not all discoveries were so cute. A gruesome-looking anglerfish was discovered lurking to ambush unsuspecting prey. At nearly a foot long, it’s one of the largest fish living at these depths.

 
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Re: Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

Post by Dragon on Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:47 pm



Divers have discovered what is believed to be the world's first two-headed sea slug.
A diver came across the psychedelic creature near a sandbar called Kapalai off the coast of Sabah in eastern Malaysian Borneo.
The abnormality may have been caused by a birth defect or even pollution.

As well as having two heads, the slug, or nudibranch as they are also known, also possesses both female and male sex organs because all nudibranches are hermaphrodites.
The creature, measuring around an inch-long (2.5cm) is part of the species nembrotha kubaryana, but is more commonly known as a variable neon slug due to its incredible colouring of neon green and bright orange which warns predators of their toxicity.

They feed on sea squirts – tiny creatures with bag-like bodies - removing chemicals from them which it then stores, before exuding as a slimy mucus if it is threatened by predators.


 
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Re: Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

Post by Dragon on Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:48 pm



The Portuguese Man-of-War is fifty times bigger than this nudibranch... a tiny sea slug. But in this David-vs-Goliath scenario, don't bet against the nudibranch. It can nibble away at the Man-of-War's deadly tentacles, and use their stingers for its own defense.

 
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Re: Stunning new species of sea slugs discovered

Post by Dragon on Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:50 pm



This is a sacoglossan, a herbivorous animal commonly known as a sap-sucking slug. It pierces the algae and sucks out the sap from the cells.

Those large, clear appendages on the back are called the cerata, or kerata, and the green ducts are branches of its digestive gland. If you look closely you can see material traveling up and down those green ducts.

It's possible this is a solar-powered slug. Some sacoglossans keep chloroplasts from the algae alive in their body, where they continue to photosynthesize the sun's energy into sugars, a phenomenon known as kleptoplasty.

On the head you can see two black primitive eye spots, and a long pair of sensory stalks known as rhinophores. It looks like it's lost part of one of them. You can even see branches of the digestive gland in the head.


 
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