Runcina brenkoae

Runcina brenkoae (Thompson, 1980)

Runcina brenkoae by Enric Madrenas




































Runcina brenkoae  T. E. Thompson, 1980

 Classification according to Bouchet et al. (2017)
Taxonomic source: World Register of Marine Species (AphiaID: 141409).
The body shape is elongate, slightly narrower at the front than at the rear, but can vary depending on whether the animal is still or wandering. The specimens can reach up to 3.5 mm in length. The body is coloured dark-brown with a reddish hue and the entire dorsum is covered with irregular lines and black spots that anastomose. There is a series of small whitish dots grouped in the front of the animal, at the sides and at the rear end of the back, also in the base of the tail. On both sides of the head region has a depigmentated zone in which the eyes are easily observable. Under the rear right edge of the dorsum there are two or three small gill leaves, semitransparent but with some fine black spots. The foot has the same coloration as the dorsum although it lacks the black lines and the spots do not anastomose. The tail has a very well defined dark area in the center, and the sides of that area have a whitish translucent shade with some dark spots on the edge.

No data on the biology of this species are known. The few cites available show that it appears in collected masses of various algae. A specimen collected in Cadaqués (Spain) moved with characteristic soft stretching movements followed by a sharp contraction of the body. In addition, while moving, the rear portion of the dorsum (mantle crest) remains somewhat elevated.


  •  Runcina. From Latin “runcina”, carpenter’s plane, a tool used to smooth the wood’s surface.
  • Brenkoae. In honor of Mirjana Hrs-Brenko (1935-) who has been employed at the Rovinj Marine Research Station (Croatia) since 1960, working on bivalves taxonomy, ecology and culture.

This species, originally described by Thompson in 1980 in the Adriatic, in waters of today’s Croatia, has been only collected in Banyuls sur Mer (France) and Catalonia (Cadaqués and Tossa de Mar).

Known georeferenced records of the species: Runcina brenkoae
: 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 Runcina brenkoae based on our own records.

More pictures


    Araujo AK, Pola M, Malaquías MAE, et al. 2022. Molecular phylogeny of European Runcinida (Gastropoda,  Heterobranchia): the discover of an unexpected pool of complex species, with special reference to the case of Runcina coronata. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. XX:1–28.
    Ballesteros M. 2007. Lista actualizada de los opistobranquios (Mollusca: Gastropoda: Opisthobranchia) de las costas catalanas. Spira. 2(3):163–188.
    Ballesteros M, Madrenas E, Pontes M. 2016. Actualización del catálogo de los moluscos opistobranquios (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) de las costas catalanas. Spira. 6:1–28.
    Ballesteros M, Madrenas E, Pontes M. 2023. OPK - Opistobranquis. Available from
    Correa M, Madrenas E, Riesgo A, et al. 2015. First molecular approach to the study of Mediterranean Runcina Forbes [in Forbes & Hanley], 1851 (Heterobranchia: Runcinacea).
    Furfaro G, Vitale F, Licchelli C, et al. 2020. Two Seas for One Great Diversity: Checklist of the Marine Heterobranchia (Mollusca; Gastropoda) from the Salento Peninsula (South-East Italy). Diversity. 12(12):171.
    Long SJ. 2006. Bibliography of Opisthobranchia 1554-2000. Bayside Books & Press, Tustin, CA, U.S.A. 672p.
    McDonald G. 2009. Bibliographia Nudibranchia. 2nd Online Edition, Annotated. 1072 pp  Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz. Available from
    Parera A, Pontes M, Salvador X, et al. 2020. Sea slugs (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Heterobranchia): the other inhabitants of the city of Barcelona (Spain). Butlletí de la Institució Catalana d’Història Natural, 84: 75-100.
    Pontes M, Salvador X, Parera A, et al. 2021. Biodiversity in anthropized marinas. The case of the Barcelona Forum bathing area (Spain). Barcelona: Institució Catalana d’Història Natural (Monografies de la Societat Catalana d’Història Natural). 68 p.
    Prkić J, Petani A, Iglić Ð, et al. 2018. Stražnjoškržnjaci Jadranskoga Mora: Slikovni Atlas i Popis Hrvatskih Vrsta / Opisthobranchs of the Adriatic Sea: Photographic Atlas and List of Croatian Species. Bibinje: Ronilaćki Klub Sveti Roko. 464 p. Available from
    Schmekel L, Cappellato D. 2002. Contributions to the Runcinidae. II. Three new species and comparative studies on five established species of Runcina (Opisthobranchia Cephalaspidea) in the Mediterranean. Vie et Milieu 52 (2-3): 86-102.
    Templado J, Villanueva R. 2010. Checklist of Phylum Mollusca. pp. 148-198 In Coll, M., et al., 2010. The biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea: estimates, patterns, and threats. PLoS ONE 5(8):36pp.
    Thompson TE. 1980. New species of the bullomorph genus Runcina from the Northern Adriatic Sea. Journal of Molluscan Studies 46: 154-157.
    Trainito E, Doneddu M. 2014. Nudibranchi del Mediterraneo. 2nd. Il Castello. 192 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) "Runcina brenkoae" in OPK-Opistobranquis. Published: 14/08/2013. Accessed: 04/03/2024. Available at (

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