Haminoea cymbalum
(Quoy & Gaimard, 1833)

Family: Haminoeidae


Found throughout the Indo-West Pacific.


Fingal Bay, Port Stephens, New South Wales, Australia. May 1993. in rock pool, 3 specimens, 23-27mm long alive. - The green on the shell is caused by a fine layer of microscopic green algae. Small tufts of filamentous algae are also growing on the anterior part of the shell. PHOTO: Bill Rudman.

Most species of the Haminoea are translucent with brown, grey and white mottling. Species are found throughout tropical and temperate seas, and often occur in very large populations. Haminoea cymbalum is characterised by the bright orange spots and diffuse purple markings on the translucent greenish body. Sometimes either the orange or purple may be absent but animals are usually clearly identifiable.

All species of Haminoea are herbivorous, grinding their algal food, usually filamentous green species, but sometimes the Sea-lettuce Ulva, or the unicellular algal film which settles on the sandy-mud surfaces on which Haminoea is often found.

See Clay Carlson & Patty Jo Hoff's message below with pictures from Guam and the suggestion that this should be called Haminoea simillima.

Compare with four other orange spotted species, Haminoea ovalis, Haminoea sp. 1., Haminoea sp. 2. and Haminoea sp. 3.

See Carlson & Hoff's message discussing the 5 orange-spotted species.

• Rudman,W.B.,1971. Structure and functioning of the gut in the Bullomorpha (Opisthobranchia). Part 1. Herbivores. Journal of Natural History, 5: 647-675.
• Rudman,W.B.,1971. On the opisthobranch genus Haminoea Turton & Kingston. Pacific Science, 25: 545-559.

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 1999 (March 18) Haminoea cymbalum (Quoy & Gaimard, 1833). [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/factsheet/hamicymb

Related messages

  1. Mass spawning in Haminoea cymbalum
    From: Philibert Bidgrain, February 16, 2007
  2. Haminoea cymbalum from the Cook Islands
    From: Marcus Coltro, May 26, 2006
  3. Trailing in Haminoea cymbalum from Reunion Island
    From: Philibert Bidgrain, October 18, 2005
  4. Haminoea cymbalum from Christmas Island
    From: W.B. Rudman, May 8, 2002
  5. Haminoea? from the Philippines
    From: Erwin Koehler, June 14, 2001
  6. Sesquiterpene molecule from Haminoea cymbalum
    From: Brett Baker, April 15, 2001
  7. Haminoea cymbalum in southern Queensland
    From: John Bodman, June 29, 2000
  8. Re: Haminoea cymbalum in aquaria
    From: Nathan Cope, August 19, 1999
  9. Keeping Haminoea cymbalum in aquaria
    From: Nathan Cope, August 17, 1999
  10. Food of Haminoea cymbalum
    From: Clay Carlson, March 24, 1999
  11. Re: Haminoea cymbalum & H. simillima
    From: C. Carlson & P.J. Hoff, March 21, 1999
  12. Haminoea cymbalum? from Sulawesi
    From: Lindsay Warren, March 18, 1999

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