Bosellia mimetica
Trinchese, 1890

Superfamily: ELYSIOIDEA
Family: Elysiidae


Mediterranean, Atlantic coast of Spain. Also Caribbean and Atlantic coast of South America to Brazil.


L'Escala, Spain, 5m deep, September, 2000. <1cm long. Photo: Daco

Small (less than 8mm) sacoglossan, with a rounded and flattened body. Its mottled green colour matches the colour of the alga Halimeda tuna on which it lives and feeds. Its origins are unclear but it could be best described as an elysiid in which the parapodia are permanently opened. Thompson & Jacklin (1988) report finding it feeding on both Udotea petiolata and Halimeda tuna.

Compare with Elysiella pusilla from the Indo-West Pacific, another sacoglossan adapted for feeding and living on Halimeda.

• Marcus, Ev, (1973) On the genus Bosellia. Bull. Mar. Sci., 23(4): 811-823.
• Marcus, Ev. (1978) On a new species of Bosellia. Boletim de Zoologia da Universidade de Sao Paulo, 3: 1-6.
• Marin, A. & Ros, J.D. (1988) The Sacoglossa (Mollusca, Opisthobranchia) of the South East Iberian peninsula. A Catalogue of species and presence of algal chloroplasts in them. Iberus, 8(1): 25-49.
• Marin, A. & Ros, J.D. (1989): The chloroplast-animal association in four Iberian Sacoglossan Opisthobranchs: Elysia timida, Elysia translucens, Thuridilla hopei and Bosellia mimetica. Scientia Marina, 53(2-3): 429-440.
• Thompson, T.E, & Jaklin, A. (1988) Eastern Mediterranean opisthobranchia: Elysiidae (Sacoglossa = Ascoglossa). J. Moll. Stud., 54: 59-69.
• Trinchese, S. (1890) Descrizione del nuovo genere Bosellia. Memorie della Regio Accademia delle Scienze dell'Instituto di Bologna, 5: 773-778. figs. 1-12.

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2000 (October 2) Bosellia mimetica Trinchese, 1890. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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