Limenandra nodosa

Limenandra nodosa (Haefelfinger & Stamm, 1958)

Limenandra nodosa by Lluís Toll

Class: Gastropoda  Cuvier, 1797
Subclass: Heterobranchia  J.E. Gray, 1840
Clade: Euthyneura  Spengel, 1881
Clade: Nudipleura  Wägele & Willan, 2000
Order: Nudibranchia  Cuvier, 1817
Suborder: Dexiarchia  Schrödl, Wägele & Willan, 2001
Infraordre: Cladobranchia Willan & Morton, 1984
Parvordre: Aeolidida Odhner, 1934
Superfamily: Aeolidioidea  J.E. Gray, 1827
Family: Aeolidiidae  J.E. Gray, 1827
Genus: Limenandra  Haefelfinger & Stamm, 1958
Species: Limenandra nodosa  Haefelfinger & Stamm, 1958


  • Baeolidia nodosa (Haefelfinger & Stamm, 1958)

This species is characterized by having a very narrow and elongated body, that can reach a length of 25 mm. The color of the body is usually a somewhat opaque olive green although some specimens can be whitish. A very characteristic feature is the presence of circular spots on the back of the body; these spots are composed of concentric circles of different colors, which usually are, from the outside inwards, a white circle, a yellow circle, a red circle and a white circle in the center. The number of circles varies according to the size of the animal. There are numerous whitish spots throughout the body, rhinophores and ceratas. The oral tentacles are relatively short and robust and have the same color as the body. The rhinophores are large and thin, possessing numerous elongated protuberances of different sizes, some bifurcated, more numerous in the back side of the rhinophore. In larger specimens there could be up to 14 groups of ceratas on each side of the body, well separated from each other. The frontmost pair of ceratas is located close to the rinophores. The front groups have 5-7 ceratas whose size decreases from the most central to the most lateral. The rearmost groups have between 3-4 ceratas and just one the terminal groups. The most characteristic trait of ceratas is that they are somewhat dorso-ventrally flattened and they are not smooth but have small tubercles of different sizes. The color of the ceratas is the same as the rest of the body, but in some specimens there is some  green pigment on its surface and a pink spot at the base of the cerata. Ceratas tend to be easily autotomized and can be regenerated later. The foot is narrow and in its anterior zone it differentiates two short propodial tentacles separated by a deep central furrow. The anal orifice is behind the third group of right cerata while the gonophore is located between the second and third groups also on the right side.

The first Mediterranean specimens, that were used for the description of the species, were collected in Posidonia oceanica beds (Haefelfinger & Stamm, 1958) but it has also been reported living in Cymodocea and Zostera seabeds (Schmekel, 1968). Very few details are known of the biology of this species, appart of being extremely cryptic on any type of substrate. Schmekel (1968) indicates that it feeds on the anemone Bunodeopsis strumosa, which usually lives on leaves of Posidonia oceanica and with which it keeps a perfect mimicry.


  • Nodosa, from Latin “nodosus”, full of knots, knobs.

This species, originally from the Mediterranean area, has also been recorded in the European Atlantic, Madeira, Canary Islands and the Caribbean (Er. Marcus and Ev. Marcus 1970; Redfern 2001; Ortea et al., 2001; Valdés et al., 2006; Carmona et al., 2014), so it is an amphiatlanic species. It has been proven that the records of L. nodosa from the Pacific coasts (Gosliner 1980; Camacho-García et al., 2005; Gosliner et al., 2008), really refer to a new different species, L. confusa, extremely cryptic with L nodosa (Carmona et al., 2014). In the Iberian Peninsula it has been reported in the Levantine coasts, in the Balearics and in Catalonia (Templado, 1982, Ballesteros & Templado, 1996). In the Catalan coasts it has been found in different localities of the Costa Brava (Es Caials, L’Escala, Cala Aiguafreda, Sant Feliu de Guixols, Els Ullastres, Cala Margarida, Palamós, Blanes), Mataró and L’Ametlla de Mar.

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

References for the species: Limenandra nodosa

    Levante: Templado (1982c), Templado (1982b, 1983, 1984, as Baeolidia), Templado, Talavera and Murillo (1983, as Baeolidia). Baleares: Ballesteros and Templado (1996). Canarias: Moro et al. (1995, 2003), Ortea et al. (2001).

    General: Bertsch & Johnson, 1981:102[P]; Gosliner, 1980:66; Kay, 1979:488; Sabelli, Giannuzzi-Savelli, & Bedulli, 1990:448 as Baeolidia nodosa; Bertsch, 1972:104; Riedl, 1983:328; Schmekel, 1970:157; Schmekel & Portmann, 1982:233[P]; Templado, 1982b:225 as Limenandra nodosa.

    Sources: Cervera et al., 2004, Ballesteros, 2007 & 2016, McDonald, 2006 and other sources.


    Western Mediterranean:
    Eastern Mediterranean:
    Atlantic Ocean:
This chart displays the observation probability for Limenandra nodosa based on our own records.


Limenandra nodosa @ Lake Worth Lagoon, West Palm Beach, Florida, USA by Ariane Dimitris


More pictures


Further reading

Cite this article as:

Ballesteros, Manuel, Enric Madrenas, Miquel Pontes (2012-2018) "Limenandra nodosa" in OPK-Opistobranquis, Published: 16/05/2012, Accessed: 18/01/2018 at (

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