Saturday, July 3, 2010
July 3, 2010 : Glaucus atlanticus
Glaucus atlanticus (common names sea swallow, blue glaucus, blue sea slug and blue ocean slug) is a species of medium-sized blue sea slug, a pelagic aeolid nudibranch, a marine opisthobranch gastropod mollusk in the family Glaucidae. This is the only species in the genus Glaucus, but is closely related to Glaucilla marginata, another member of the family Glaucidae.
This species normally has a length of 5 to 8 cms in length. It is silvery grey on its dorsal side and dark and pale blue ventrally. It has dark blue stripes along the edge of its foot. It has a tapering body which is flattened and has six appendages which branch out into rayed cerata.
This nudibranch is pelagic, and is distributed throughout the world's oceans, in temperate and tropical waters. Regions where this slug is found include the East and South Coast of South Africa, European waters and Mozambique. This species floats upside down on the surface tension of the ocean.