Seth found these sea slugs yesterday at Eastern Beach. They belong to the cephalaspida order, which includes headshield slugs and bubble snails.
We were excited to finally see our first nudibranch but alas, it wasn’t meant to be.
You can learn more about it at the sea slug forum. Apparently, there is a lot of variation in colour patterns. No wonder I get overwhelmed so often!
In form, although not in colour, Philinopsis taronga is very similar to P. speciosa, but it is much more common. The posterior end of the headshield is
usually flat or raised very little. The colour is lighter or darker brown with
creamy-yellow or golden submarginal stripes on the head and parapodia, often
with cream speckling all over.
Size of animal: 20–35 mm in Vic., up to 80 mm elsewhere.
Habitat and range: intertidal to 150 m depth; usually on soft, muddy-sand
sediments, hunting for small bubble shells. NSW to Vic. and Tas.; also NZ.