Ercolania viridis

Ercolania viridis (A. Costa, 1866)

Ercolania viridis @ Croatia by Pero Ugarković

Taxonomy
 

Superdomain

Biota  

 

Kingdom

Animalia  

 

Phylum

Mollusca  

 

Class

Gastropoda  

 

Subclass

Heterobranchia  

 

Infraclass

Euthyneura  

 

Subterclass

Tectipleura  

 

Superorder

Sacoglossa  

 

Superfamily

Plakobranchoidea  

 

Family

Limapontiidae  

 

Genus

Ercolania  

 

Species

Ercolania viridis  (A. Costa, 1866)

 
 Classification according to Bouchet et al. (2017)
Taxonomic source: World Register of Marine Species (AphiaID: 141563).
Taxonomic Note: Ercolania funerea has traditionally been considered a synonym for this species, but its name has often been used in preference to Ercolania viridis to avoid possible confusion with Placida viridis and Stiliger viridis.

Synonyms

  • Embletonia funerea A. Costa, 1867
  • Embletonia nigrovittata A. Costa, 1866
  • Embletonia viridis A. Costa, 1866 (original)
  • Ercolania funerea (A. Costa, 1867)
  • Ercolania pancerii Trinchese, 1872 
  • Ercolania siottii Trinchese, 1872
  • Ercolania uziellii Trinchese, 1872 

Description
Body of a maximum reported length of 16mm. Juvenile specimens (1 to 5 mm) are lighter in color, and show green lines near the eyes that go towards the cerata on the back. The adult specimens are dark green or almost black in color due to the internal digestive gland, more or less masked by the dark pigment of the skin, for this reason they were described as a different species E. funerea. The back is covered by a white band (barely visible in certain specimens) that goes from the pericardic zone to the tail. The rhinophores have a round section, are smooth and very elongated. At the base of the rhinophores, towards the outside, there are white spots surrounding the eyes, from these spots there are lines that run along the outer back of the rhinophores to their tip, which is white. Cerata are fusiform shaped and of variable size, arranged on both sides of the body and of the same coloration due to the presence of the digestive gland inside, but with a slight reddish glow and a dark red apex. Body, cerata and rhinophores are covered with numerous brownish-red spots and white spots. The anus ends in a short papilla located in the dorsal midline, above the pericardium. The male and female gonopores are under the right rhinophore. The foot is lighter in color than the rest of the body, sometimes with yellowish tones. The foot is slightly flared at the front and has rounded edges while, at the back, it ends in a pointed tail without cerata.

Biology
This species is found in intertidal pools, calm shallow water areas, and in coastal lagoons. It feeds on cladophoric algae such as Chaetomorpha aerea and C. linum, which is why it appears in bundles of algae collected for study. The egg spawn has the shape of a wide, rounded ribbon wound onto itself (with one or one and a half whorls) and contains white or yellowish eggs with a diameter of between 75-90 microns, arranged transversely. Veliger swimming larvae hatch after 7 days at 16ºC under laboratory conditions. When disturbed, it expels a white defensive liquid, thanks to the numerous glands distributed by the cerata. E. viridis is known to retain functional chloroplasts, obtained from its food, for 12-24 hours. This species can live for quite a long time in captivity, if care is taken to renew the water from time to time.

Etymology

  • Ercolania. Probably dedicated to Giovanni Batista Ercolani, Italian physicyst and founder of the veterinary sciences in his country.
  • Viridis. From Latín “viridis”, green.

Distribution
Due to its small size and its ability to go unnoticed, there are few reports in the literature. In the Mediterranean there is evidence of its presence in Spain (Gibraltar, Eastern Andalusia, Levante and Catalonia), France (Étang de Thau, Gulf of Marseille), Italy (Livorno, Naples and Salento), Malta (Qajjenza, St. George’s Bay and Birzebbugia), Tunisia (Lac de Tunis) and in Croatia (Split). Also reported in the coast of Ukraine, on the Black Sea. In the eastern Atlantic it has been reported in the Arcachon Bay (France) (Cuénot, 1927), in Madeira (Ortea & Moro, 1998) and in Cape Verde (Rolán, 2005), while in the western Atlantic there are reports from North Carolina (USA) to Brazil, as well as in some Caribbean islands. Reports far from the type locality may correspond to the same species, or to a different cryptic species.

Known georeferenced records of the species: Ercolania viridis
Sources:
: OBIS
: GROC 2010-2011
: Enric Madrenas
: João Pedro Silva
: Bernard Picton
: GBIF.ORG
: OPK
: VIMAR
: Manuel Ballesteros.
: M@re Nostrum
: Altres fonts
: Marine Regions

References for the species: Ercolania viridis

Abundance

    Western Mediterranean:1 out of 5 stars
    Eastern Mediterranean:0 out of 5 stars
    Atlantic Ocean:1 out of 5 stars
Month

This chart displays the monthly observation probability for Ercolania viridis based on our own records.

More pictures

Bibliography

    Ballesteros, M., E. Madrenas, and M. Pontes. 2021. OPK - Opistobranquis. (https://opistobranquis.info/).
    Ballesteros, M., E. Madrenas, and M. Pontes. 2016. Actualización del catálogo de los moluscos opistobranquios (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) de las costas catalanas. Spira 6(2016): 1-28.
    Bielecki, S., G. Cavignaux, J. M. Crouzet, and S. Grall. 2011. Des limaces de rêve.
    Caviedes, V., Y. Camacho García, J. L. Cervera, and J. C. Carrasco. n.d. Diversity and distribution of sea slugs (Mollusca: Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) in two sites of the Caribbean coast of Honduras. Cah. Biol. Mar. 60: 269–282.
    Cervera, J. L., G. Calado, C. Gavaia, M. A. E. Malaquías, J. Templado, M. Ballesteros, J. C. García-Gómez, and C. Megina. 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.
    Costa, A. 1866. Saggio sui molluschi eolididei del Golfo di Napoli. Annuario del Museo Zoologico della Reale Università di Napoli, (1863) 3: 59-90, pl. 1-3 [1866]; (1864) 4: 26-37, pl. 1-2 [1867]; (1865) 5: 46-53, pl. 2 [1869].
    Cuenot, L. 1927. Contributions a la faune du Bassin d’Arcachon. IX.–Revue generale de la faune et bibliographie. Bulletin de la Station Biologique D’Arcachon 24:229-305.
    Flanders Marine Institute. 2018. Maritime Boundaries Geodatabase: Territorial Seas. Maritime Boundaries Geodatabase. (http://www.marineregions.org/).
    Frank, B. et al. 1998. Ercolania viridis accessed through: JaxShells.org on 2014-12-14. (http://www.jaxshells.org/vird.htm).
    Furfaro, G., F. Vitale, C. Licchelli, and P. Mariottini. 2020. Two Seas for One Great Diversity: Checklist of the Marine Heterobranchia (Mollusca; Gastropoda) from the Salento Peninsula (South-East Italy). Diversity. 12: 171.
    García-Gómez, J. C. 2002. Paradigmas de una fauna insólita; Los moluscos opistobranquios del estrecho de Gibraltar (Serie Ciencias) 20: 397 pp. Instituto de Estudios Gibraltareños. Algeciras, Cádiz, Spain.
    Herrera, R., L. Moro, J. Martín, O. Ocaña, J. J. Bacallado, and J. Ortea. 2016. Primeros registros de invertebrados marinos para las islas Canarias. Rev.Acad. Canar. Cienc., Vol. 28, 231-242.
    Jensen, K. 1984. A nomenclatural problem in the Ascoglossa - or: Why one should never name a green sea-slug “viridis.” Shells and Sea Life. 16: 188–190.
    Long, S. J. 2006. Bibliography of Opisthobranchia 1554-2000. Bayside Books & Press, Tustin, CA, U.S.A. 672p.
    Marcus, E. d. B. R. 1972. On some opisthobranchs from Florida. Bull. Mar. Sci. 22(2):284-308.
    Marcus, E. G., and E. d. B. R. Marcus. 1970. Opisthobranchs from Curacao and faunistically related regions. Studies on the fauna of Curacao and other Caribbean Islands 33(122):1-129; 160 figs.
    Marín, A., and J. Ros. 1988. Los Sacoglossos (Mollusca, Opisthobranchia) del sudeste Ibérico; Catálogo de las especies y presencia de cloroplastos algales en las mismas. Iberus. 8: 25–49.
    Mazzarelli, G. F. 1903. Note biologiche sugli opistobranchi del Golfo de Napoli. Partie seconda: nudibranchi. Atti della Societa Italiana de Scienze Naturali e del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Milano 42(3):280-296.
    McDonald, G. 2009. Bibliographia Nudibranchia. 2nd Online Edition, Annotated. 1072 pp  Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz. (http://escholarship.org/uc/item/8115h0wz).
    Micaroni, V., F. Strano, D. Di Franco, F. Crocetta, D. Grech, S. Piraino, and F. Boero. n.d. Project “Biodiversity MARE Tricase”: a biodiversity inventory of the coastal area of Tricase (Ionian Sea, Italy) – Mollusca: Heterobranchia. The European Zoological Journal. 2018: 180–193.
    Ortea, J., and V. Urgorri. 1981a. Opistobranquios nuevos para el litoral ibérico colectados en Galicia I. Boletín del Instituto Español de Oceanografía 6: 49-60.
    Prkić, J., A. Petani, Ð. Iglić, and L. Lanča. 2018. Stražnjoškržnjaci Jadranskoga Mora: Slikovni Atlas i Popis Hrvatskih Vrsta / Opisthobranchs of the Adriatic Sea: Photographic Atlas and List of Croatian Species. Ronilaćki Klub Sveti Roko, Bibinje.
    Pruvot-Fol, A. 1954. Mollusques opisthobranches. Faune de France, 58. Paul Lechevalier, Paris.
    Riedl, R. 1983. Fauna und Flora der Mittelmeeres, ein systematischer Meeresfuhrer fur Biologen und Naturfreunde, 836 pp. Paul Parey, Hamburg & Berlin.
    Rudman W.B. et al. 1998. Ercolania viridis accessed through: Sea Slug Forum on 2014-12-14. (http://seaslugforum.net/showall/ercoviri).
    Sánchez-Tocino, L. 2018. El Litoral de Granada - Opistobranquios. El Litoral de Granada. (https://litoraldegranada.ugr.es/el-litoral/el-litoral-sumergido/fauna/moluscos/gasteropodos/opistobranquios/).
    Sordi, M., and P. Majidi. 1957. Osservazioni sui Nudibranchi e gli Ascoglossi (Gasteropodi Opistobranchi) del litorale Livornese. Bolletino di Pesca, Piscicoltura e Idrobiologia. 11: 235–245.
    Templado, J., and R. Villanueva. 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.
    Trainito, E., and M. Doneddu. 2014. Nudibranchi del Mediterraneo, 2a. ed. Il Castello.
    Trinchese, S. 1877. Æolididae e famiglie affini del Porto di Genova. Part 1. Anatomia, fisiologia, embriologia delle Phyllobranchiae, Hermaeidae, Aeolididae, Proctonotidae, Dotonidae del Porto de Genova. Atti della R. Università di Genova. Atlas, pp. 1-94, pls. 1-35.
    Valdés, A., J. Hamann, D. W. Behrens, and A. DuPont. 2006. Caribbean sea slugs: a field guide to the opisthobranch mollusks from the tropical northwestern Atlantic. Washington: Sea Challengers Natural History Books. 289 pp.
    Vayssière, A. 1888. Recherches zoologiques et anatomiques sur les mollusques opisthobranches du Golfe de Marseille pt. 2. Nudibranches (Cirrobranches) et Ascoglosses. Annales du Musée d’Histoire Naturelle de Marseille 3 (4): 1-160.
    WoRMS Editorial Board. 2021. World Register of Marine Species. WoRMS. (http://www.marinespecies.org).

    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:

Pontes, Miquel, Manuel Ballesteros, Enric Madrenas (2021) "Ercolania viridis" in OPK-Opistobranquis. Published: 11/09/2014. Accessed: 17/05/2021. Available at (https://opistobranquis.info/en/1TuQT)

To copy this cite click on the right button.