Dolabrifera edmundsi

Dolabrifera edmundsi (Rang, 1828)

Dolabrifera edmundsi @ Bom Bom Island, Principe by Peter Wirtz




































Dolabrifera edmundsi  Á. Valdés, Breslau, Padula, Schrödl, Camacho-García, Malaquias, Alexander, Bottomley, Vital, Hooker & Gosliner, 2017

 Classification according to Bouchet et al. (2017)
Taxonomic source: World Register of Marine Species (AphiaID: 1053449).
Taxonomic note: Originally described in the literature as Dolabrifera dolabrifera (Rang, 1828), a series of molecular and morphological studies of freshly collected specimens, as well as a review of the literature and the type specimen, indicate that Dolabrifera dolabrifera is a complex of five species of genetically different taxa. The name Dolabrifera dolabrifera is preserved for the species found in the tropical Indo-Pacific. Dolabrifera nicaraguana is endemic to the Eastern Pacific. Dolabrifera ascifera, D. virens and this species Dolabrifera edmundsi n. sp. are restricted to the tropical Atlantic, with distribution ranges partially overlapping in the Caribbean region and Saint Elena. The temperate Pacific species Dolabrifera brazieri is also distinct and endemic in the temperate regions of southeastern Australia and New Zealand. These species of Dolabrifera constitute highly divergent lineages and most contain unique internal anatomical features, particularly in the male reproductive morphology and the shape of the inner shell, which makes them relatively easy to identify by dissection. However, externally all these species are extremely variable in their chromatic pattern and morphology, so they are practically indistinguishable “de visu”, something particularly problematic in the Atlantic ocean, because there are three sympatric species in the Caribbean. (Valdés et al., 2017)




  • Dolabrifera. From Latin “dolabra”, two sided tool like an ax or hatchet + “fero”, to bring, to carry.
  • Edmundsi. In honor to Malcolm Edmunds, distinguished English taxonomist specialized in opistobranchs, sadly deceased on January 2017.


Known georeferenced records of the species: Dolabrifera edmundsi
: GROC 2010-2011
: Enric Madrenas
: João Pedro Silva
: Bernard Picton
: Manuel Ballesteros.
: M@re Nostrum
: Altres fonts
: Marine Regions


    Western Mediterranean: ☆☆☆☆☆
    Eastern Mediterranean: ☆☆☆☆☆
    Atlantic Ocean: ★★☆☆☆

This chart displays the monthly observation probability for Dolabrifera edmundsi based on our own records.


Dolabrifera edmundsi by Ariane Dimitris


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    Ballesteros M, Madrenas E, Pontes M. 2024. OPK - Opistobranquis. Available from
    Cervera JL, Calado G, Gavaia C, et al. 2004. An annotated and updated checklist of the opisthobranchs (Mollusca: Gastropoda) from Spain and Portugal (including islands and archipelagos). Boletín Instituto Español de Oceanografía, 20 (1-4): 1-111. L.
    Klussmann-Kolb A. 2004. Phylogeny of the Aplysiidae (Gastropoda, Opisthobranchia) with new aspects of the evolution of seahares. Zoologica Scripta. 33(5):439–462.
    Long SJ. 2006. Bibliography of Opisthobranchia 1554-2000. Bayside Books & Press, Tustin, CA, U.S.A. 672p.
    Malaquias MA, Calado GJP. 1997. The malacological fauna of Salvage Islands - 1. Opisthobranch Molluscs. Bol. Mus. Mun. Funchal, 49(281): 149-170.
    McDonald G. 2009. Bibliographia Nudibranchia. 2nd Online Edition, Annotated. 1072 pp  Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz. Available from
    Moro L, Bacallado JJ, Ortea JA. 2010. Babosas marinas de las islas Canarias. Actas VI Semana Científica Telesforo Bravo, Instituto de Estudios Hispánicos de Canarias.
    Moro L, Martín Esquivel JL, Garrido Sanahuja MJ, et al. 2003. Lista de especies marinas de Canarias (algas, hongos, plantas y animales). Consejería de Política Territorial y Medio Ambiente del Gobierno de Canarias. 248 p.
    Ortea J, L. Moro MC, Bacallado JJ. 2003. Resultados Científicos del proyecto “Macaronesia 2000” Chinijo-2002: Moluscos Opistobranquios. Revista de la Academia Canaria de Ciencias 14 (3-4): 165-180.
    Ortea J, Espinosa J, Caballer M, et al. 2012. Initial inventory of the seaslugs (Opisthobranchia and Sacoglossa) from the expedition Karubentos, held in May 2012 in Guadeloupe (Lesser Antilles, Caribbean Sea). Revista de la Academia Canaria de Ciencias 24: 153-182.
    Rang S. 1828. Histoire Naturelle des Aplysiens. Paris, Firmin Didot 83 pp., 24 pl.:
    Rudman W.B. et al. 1998 2010. Dolabrifera dolabrifera accessed through: Sea Slug Forum on 2014-12-14. Available from
    Valdés Á, Breslau E, Padula V, et al. 2017. Molecular and morphological systematics of Dolabrifera  Gray, 1847 (Mollusca: Gastropoda: Heterobranchia: Aplysiomorpha). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 2017, XX, 1-35. With 22 figures.
    Wirtz P. 1995. Unterwasserführer Madeira, Kanarean, Azoren. Stuttgart, Germany: Delius Klasing, Edition Naglschmid. 247 p.
    WoRMS Editorial Board. 2023. World Register of Marine Species. WoRMS. Available from

    Bibliography based on the works by Steve Long, 2006. Bibliography of Opisthobranchia 1554-2000 and Gary McDonald, 2009. Bibliographia Nudibranchia, with later updates from other resources.

Further reading

Cite this article as:

Ballesteros, M., Madrenas, E. & Pontes, M. (2023) "Dolabrifera edmundsi" in OPK-Opistobranquis. Published: 22/02/2015. Accessed: 21/05/2024. Available at (

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