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Phylum Mollusca > Class Gastropoda > sea slugs > Order Anaspidea
Spotted sea hare
Aplysia oculifera*
updated May 2020
Where seen? This large spotted sea hare is sometimes seen on many of our shores, on sandy sheltered areas among or near seagrasses. Sometimes, half buried in soft sediments.

Features: 8-10cm. Large, long, fleshy body smooth, brownish sometimes with a greenish or bluish, with a mottled pattern made up of tiny white spots clustered into small irregular patches. The inner surface of the 'wings' (called parapodia) has white spots which form short thin white bars along the edges. Large flappy oral tentacles, smaller rhinophores. Sometimes with a narrow white stripe along the edges of the oral tentacles, with a white stripe in the middle. It releases a purple dye when distressed.

Sometimes confused with the Geographic sea hare which has a pattern of tiny white spots that form patterns with fine horizontal lines along the body. The Spotted sea hare doesn't have fine horizontal lines along the body.

Changi, May 11

Tanah Merah, Jun 09

Egg strings laid by the sea hare.
Chek Jawa, Dec 19

Releasing purple ink.
Kusu Island, Mar 06

Half buried in soft sediments.
Pulau Ubin, May 08

Spotted sea hare (Aplysia oculifera)

*Identification needs to be confirmed. Species are difficult to positively identify without close examination.
On this website, they are grouped by external features for convenience of display.

Spotted sea hares on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr

Other sightings on Singapore shores

Coney Island, Feb 19
Photo shared by Richard Kuah on facebook.

Changi, May 11
Photo shared by James Koh on his blog.

Changi, Apr 15
Photo shared by Marcus Ng on facebook.

Changi, Jun 20
Photo shared by Marcus Ng on facebook.

Beting Bronok, Jun 10
Photo shared by Loh Koh Sheng on his flickr.

Pulau Sekudu, May 04

Tuas, Oct 12
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on flickr.

Releasing purple dye.
Kusu Island, Mar 06

Half buried in sediments
Kusu Island, Mar 06

Seringat-Kias, Aug 15
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on flickr.

Cyrene Reef, Jun 12
Photo shared by Russel Low on facebook.

Pulau Hantu, May 14
Photo shared by Rene Ong on facebook.

Terumbu Raya, Feb 14
Photo shared by Russel Low on facebook.

Pulau Semakau East, Jun 17
Photo shared by Dayna Cheah on facebook.

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.
  • Humann, Paul and Ned Deloach. 2010. Reef Creature Identification: Tropical Pacific New World Publications. 497pp.
  • Kuiter, Rudie H and Helmut Debelius. 2009. World Atlas of Marine Fauna. IKAN-Unterwasserachiv. 723pp.
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