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Nudibranch; Telesto Coral

Nudibranch; Telesto Coral

Tritonia sp.

The telesto coral nudibranch is a seldom seen undescribed species that is a master of camouflage and blends in very well with its host soft coral. It can be found living on Carijoa sp coral along the southern WA coast to the Gulf of Vincent, SA and on the east coast from NSW to Qld.  The body is orange coloured and the feathery cerata look very similar in appearance to the soft coral polyps of the host it lives and feeds on. This species is more active at night and it has been found at night time moving across other sponges and sand as it transfers between hosts. The Carijoa Tritonia (Tritonia sp) grows to a maximum length of approximately 3cm.

Other common names include:  Carijoa Tritonia

Occurrence at the Busselton Jetty: 

Due to this species inconspicuous and cryptic nature, it is rarely observed from the underwater observatory.

Image by: A. Terlick