Celtic sea slug (Onchidella celtica)
|Researched by||Sonia Rowley||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||-|
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandThe Celtic sea slug is abundant on the north and south coasts of Devon and Cornwall. Also recorded from Croyde Bay, Bristol Channel; Upper Loch Fyne, Scotland, the Farne Islands and Jersey, the Channel Isles.
HabitatThe Celtic sea slug can be found on exposed rock, usually on sandy shores amongst mussels, barnacles and hiding in crevices. It forages down the shore as the tide goes out, crawling on small algae and returning up the shore as the tide rises. Mainly observed between April and November.
- Up to 13 mm long and 6 mm wide.
- Dark green-black in colour.
- Mantle covered with large, coarse, evenly spaced tubercles.
- Head and grey foot obscured by tuberculate mantle when stationary.
Additional informationThis species is not an opisthobranch sea slug. It is a pulmonate slug more adapted to terrestrial and freshwater habitats, and related to most land snails. Being a pulmonate gastropod means that it has no gills. Therefore the mantle cavity acts as a lung and is closed by a sphinctered opening called the pneumostome, situated close to the anus. Pulmonate sea slugs also have no shell. It has a veliger larval stage which is completed within the egg capsule.
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Barfield, P., 2003. Notes on the history of the celtic sea slug; Onchidella celtica (Cuvier, 1817). Porcupine Newsletter, 13, 10-12.
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Hayward, P., Nelson-Smith, T. & Shields, C. 1996. Collins pocket guide. Sea shore of Britain and northern Europe. London: HarperCollins.
Hayward, P.J. & Ryland, J.S. (ed.) 1995b. Handbook of the marine fauna of North-West Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Howson, C.M. & Picton, B.E., 1997. The species directory of the marine fauna and flora of the British Isles and surrounding seas. Belfast: Ulster Museum. [Ulster Museum publication, no. 276.]
Rudman, B., 2002. Sea slug forum [on-line]. http://www.seaslugforum.net/, 2004-06-23
Sanderson, W.G., 1996. Rare benthic marine flora and fauna in Great Britain: the development of criteria for assessment. Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough. JNCC Report, no. 240.
Smith, S., 1987. Onchidella celtica (Forbes and Hanley, 1852) and other mollusca occasionally visiting western Scottish seas. Porcupine Newsletter, 3, 274-280.
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Tween, T.C., 1987. Onchidella and the sublittoral. Porcupine Newsletter, 4, 19-22.
Conchological Society of Great Britain & Ireland, 2018. Mollusc (marine) records for Great Britain and Ireland. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/aurwcz accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-25.
Fenwick, 2018. Aphotomarine. Occurrence dataset http://www.aphotomarine.com/index.html Accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-01
National Trust, 2017. National Trust Species Records. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/opc6g1 accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.
NBN (National Biodiversity Network) Atlas. Available from: https://www.nbnatlas.org.
OBIS (Ocean Biodiversity Information System), 2023. Global map of species distribution using gridded data. Available from: Ocean Biogeographic Information System. www.iobis.org. Accessed: 2023-12-09
This review can be cited as:
Last Updated: 01/11/2005