Nudibranch Ecology and ID Course
Nudibranchs, and other sea slugs, are a diverse and fascinating group of marine gastropods that have developed very colorful and ornate forms. Apart from being a favorite sighting by divers and photographers, their biodiversity is an indicator of total reef diversity, and also can be used when assessing changes in the physical or biological composition of marine areas in the face of disturbances. In our course you will learn about the ecology and taxonomy of sea slugs, and about how to conduct scientific surveys to monitor their abundance and diversity.
- Be certified as an advanced diver under a leading diving organization (PADI, SSI, etc) (must include at least 1 deep dive)
- Demonstrate proper diving ability at an Advanced Level and be proficient in buoyancy and self-awareness.
- Be able to differentiate between different families of sea slugs using anatomical features
- Learn various survey methods (endo-benthic, quadrat sampling, roving diver) used to survey for marine invertebrates in the muck.
- Be familiar with the hierarchical structure of taxonomy (phyla to species).
- Learn about the differences between morphological and molecular identification for marine invertebrates.
- Understand the ecological and economic role of sea slugs globally
- Attend the nudibranch and sea slug lecture
- Complete the Sea Slug Quiz with a passing grade of at least 80%
- Attend at least 1 briefing involving procedures for diving in soft-sediment habitats (aka. muck habitat)
- Conduct at least 1 survey to observe and record sea slugs
- Complete identification of 2 different species (underwater or using photos) using online and library resources
Expected course time about 4 hours
Published papers and studies based on this course
- Selective consumption of sacoglossan sea slugs (Mollusca: Gastropoda) by scleractinian corals (Cnidaria: Anthozoa) by Rahul Mehrotra, Coline Monchanin, Chad M. Scott, Niphon Phongsuwan, Manuel Caballer Gutierrez, Suchana Chavanich, Bert W. Hoeksema
- The extraordinary genus Myja is not a tergipedid, but related to the Facelinidae s. str. with the addition of two new species from Japan (Mollusca, Nudibranchia) by Alexander Martynov, Rahul Mehrotra, Suchana Chavanich, Rie Nakano, Sho Kashio, Kennet Lundin, Bernard Picton and Tatiana Korshunova
- The formerly enigmatic Unidentiidae in the limelight again: a new species of the genus Unidentia from Thailand (Gastropoda: Nudibranchia) by Tatiana Korshunova, Rahul Mehrotra, Spencer Arnold, Kennet Lundin, Bernard Picton and Alexander Martynov
- On the genus Armina (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia: Nudibranchia) in Thailand by Rahul Mehrotra, Manuel Caballer Gutierrez and Suchana Chavanich
- Species inventory of sea slugs (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) for Koh Tao, Thailand, with 25 first records for Thai waters by Rahul Mehrotra and Chad M. Scott
- Predation on a sacoglossan gastropod by a mushroom coral by Rahul Mehrotra, Chad M. Scott, Joel M. Rohrer and Bert W. Hoeksema
- Corals Have Evolved to Eat Sea Slugs
- The Koh Tao Team Makes a New Nudibranch Discovery
- A New species of Sea Slug – Found on Koh Tao
Nudibranchs and Sea Slugs of Koh Tao and Nearby Islands
A guide to the Nudibranchs and Sea Slugs of Koh Tao