Hypselodoris obscura is a very hardy species of nudibranch often found and thriving in dirty coastal water and estuaries. It is endemic to the subtropical and temperate waters of the east coast of Australia. The vivid blue, yellow and red of its colouration contrast against the drab silt that often covers it sponge food source. It feeds on Dysidea species of sponge.
It is often confused with Hypselodoris infucata. Johnson & Valdes in their 2001 paper: The Hypselodoris infucata, H. obscura and H. saintvincentius species complex (Mollusca, Nudibranchia, Chromodorididae), with remarks on the genus Brachychlanis Ehrenberg, 1831, found that it is only distinguishable from H. obscura by a single anatomical difference in the reproductive system. They commented: "There are no other major morphological or anatomical differences between H. infucata and H. obscura. It is not clear whether H. obscura and H. infucata are different species, but since there is at least a consistent anatomical difference between them, they are provisionally regarded as distinct. The reproductive system, radula and external morphology are extremely variable among specimens of H. infucata. Specimens from Indo-Pacifc localities other than south-east Australia, even those externally similar to H. obscura, belong to H. infucata."
I usually photograph every one I see.
Photo & text by David Mullins, La Balsa Park, Mooloolah River,
We embarked upon this adventure of ours while diving here on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia. Upon realizing the amazing variety of nudibranchs we were seeing, we developed an appetite for not only finding as many different species as possible but identifying and learning all we could about these most amazing creatures of the sea.
nudibranch.com.au was born when a friend of Gary’s suggested we share our knowledge with the world. The site commenced in March 2003 when we set out on our quest to find, identify and record all of the nudibranchs here in our area. The ever changing sea and seasons give up new surprises every visit whether they are subtidal or intertidal.
We describe our searching and identifying component of the quest as The Treasure Hunt, and the recording thereof upon the web site as The Never Ending Story.
We welcome for inclusion on the site the findings of other workers in this area that we may not have yet recorded.
From this website a Nudibranch Identification book called Undersea Jewels - A Colour Guide to Nudibranchs was published in 2006. The book is a 'Colour Guide'. After all that is the first thing anyone remembers about first seeing a Nudibranch.
LOCATE, RECORD, IDENTIFY and POST every species of OPISTHOBRANCH to be found on the Sunshine Coast Queensland, Australia. Learn more>
To LOCATE through scuba diving and intertidal searching.
To RECORD by underwater and studio/taxonomic photography (including microscopy photography) of the specimens.
To IDENTIFY these speciesthrough invaluable support fromqualified authorities in this field and developing reference resources.
To POST upon our web site not only images of the species and their natural history behaviour but also information concerning size abundance and localities. Additionally to disseminate to other sites information considered unusual (see Useful Resources).
Towards achieving these aims we will continue to acquire and develop the necessary equipment, resources and knowledge.
Have fun, learn and enjoy the Earth's greatest creatures!