L. Shimek, Ph.D.
Valdés, A. 2005. A new species
of Aeolidiella Bergh, 1867 (Mollusca: Nudibranchia:
Aeolidiidae) from the Florida Keys, USA. The Veliger 47(3):218-223.
A new species of Aeolidiella is
described based on specimens collected from the Florida Keys.
The species is characterized by having a translucent gray
color, with opaque white pigment on the rhinophores, oral
tentacles, and most of the dorsum except for the head, where
the white pigment forms a triangular patch. External and internal
differences separate this species from other members of the
genus. It is possible that this species is bred for aquarium
control of species of Aiptasia and commercialized under
the name Berghia verrucicornis.
According to the author, this new species
is probably illustrated here
on the Sea Slug Forum.
Several years ago, in an article
in Aquarium Frontiers, Eric Borneman discussed several potential
predatory nudibranchs all being sold under the name Berghia
verrucicornis. Eric noted that there were at least three
species being sold under that name. This article may be the
first scientific description of one of those nudibranchs,
possibly the species he designated as "unidentified species
Much verbiage has been wasted on discussions of what
is the real Berghia on The Sea Slug Forum and elsewhere
with no clear answer. This lack of a clear answer is related
to the difficulty of correctly identifying nudibranchs, particularly
small ones. This article gives an excellent description of
one of these species, and now the name for this new species
is NOT Berghia, but rather Aeolidiella stephanieae
Valdés 2005. As Steve Kempf points
out, even if this species is not Berghia, it still
eats Aiptasia, as does Berghia verrucicornis.