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Phylum Mollusca > Class Gastropoda > sea slugs > Order Anaspidea
Mini sea hare
Aplysia parvula
Family Aplysiidae
updated May 2020
Where seen? This small, well camouflaged sea hare is seldom spotted.

Features: About 5cm. A long thin body with a pair of small 'wings' in the middle and long oral tentacles and rhinophores. The hole between the wings (called the foramen) is large in this sea hare and is usually ringed in black. In other sea hares, the foramen is microscopic. They come in a wide variety of body colours but usually the 'wings' have a black edge and the tips of the rhinophores and oral tentacles are dark.

It is among the smallest of the Aplysia sea hares, and 'parvus' means 'little'. (It isn't the smallest sea hare: the seagrass seahare (Phyllaplysia sp.) is much smaller).

Sometimes mistaken for the Leaf slug (Elysia ornata) which is not a sea hare but a sap sucking slug. The Leaf slug only has one pair of tentacles and its 'wings' are much longer, extending along most of the body length.

Sisters Island, Feb 10

Rhinophore and oral tentacle tips dark.
Tiny eyes under the rhinophores.

Large foramen ringed in black.

Mini sea hares on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr

Other sightings on Singapore shores

Filmed on Sisters Island, Feb 10

Aplysia parvula sea hare from SgBeachBum on Vimeo.

Links References
  • Tan Siong Kiat and Henrietta P. M. Woo, 2010 Preliminary Checklist of The Molluscs of Singapore (pdf), Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore.
  • Debelius, Helmut, 2001. Nudibranchs and Sea Snails: Indo-Pacific Field Guide IKAN-Unterwasserachiv, Frankfurt. 321 pp.
  • Wells, Fred E. and Clayton W. Bryce. 2000. Slugs of Western Australia: A guide to the species from the Indian to West Pacific Oceans. Western Australian Museum. 184 pp.
  • Kuiter, Rudie H and Helmut Debelius. 2009. World Atlas of Marine Fauna. IKAN-Unterwasserachiv. 723pp.
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