You don’t need to visit the Great Barrier Reef to find some of Queensland’s most colourful marine life! The stretch of coastline from the top of Moreton Bay to Noosa, boasts over 800 species of seaslugs (collectively termed Nudibranchs) all of which have been documented by Nudibranch expert and enthusiast, Gary Cobb (http://www.nudibranch.com.au/index.html). The 796th species was recorded for the first time in South East Queensland by Hydrobiology’s Josh Hatton – a Scientist within the Ecology and Biodiversity Management Team. This fascinating discovery was made while snorkeling over the shallow seagrass meadows off Woody Point, just over 20km north of Brisbane. The species, Armina Occulta (pictured top left), was originally discovered in Thailand in 2017. With short lifespans and specialised food requirements, Nudibranchs are excellent indicators of climate change and habitat loss.
Get involved with your local Sea Slug Census: https://www.facebook.com/groups/seaslugcensus/ – A ‘citizen science challenge’, to document as many Nudibranchs as possible over a single weekend!
Photos: Josh Hatton, Hydrobiology – Nudibranchs from Woody Point.