image credit: paulabutlerphotography.com Habitat: west coast of North America and further south Status: No Conservation Concerns
Beautiful! Beautiful! B-e-a-utiful!!!!This Spanish Shawl Nudibranch (Flabellina iodinea) is breathtaking with it’s three magnificent colors: purple, orange, and scarlet. The neon orange appendages you see on the back of Flabellina iodinea are called cerata which extract oxygen from the sea water they live in. The cerata are also extensions of the digestive system, and are used to store the stinging cells of the anemones and fan-like hydroids they eat for protection.They are able to gracefully swim by flexing their body strongly and pushing off from the substrate into open water. Check out the video of them swimming below – it almost looks like they are flapping their “wings!”
I have a confession: I love animals. Join me and the rest of the Featured Creature community as we learn about the weirdest, coolest, and craziest animals out there. Including your dog, Mr. Scrufflebutt (if you submit him!).