Melanochlamys lorrainae
(Rudman, 1968)

Superfamily: PHILINOIDEA
Family: Aglajidae


New Zealand


Upper: Wattle Bay, near the entrance to the Manukau Harbour, Auckland, New Zealand, extreme low tide, buried in sand. 17 October 2005. Length of animal 24 mm. Photo: Shungo Kawagata. Lower:Shell of paratype. West side of Puponga Pt, Manukau Harbour, Auckland. 23 November 1965. Coll: N.Douglas. 8 x 6 mm. Photo: G.W. Batt.

The animal is identical in external shape to Melanochlamys cylindrica, but ranges in colour from pure white to a mottled grey. In anatomy it is typical of the genus Melanochlamys. The shape of the shell differentiates this species from the other white New Zealand aglajid, Philinopsis virgo, and the other New Zealand species of Melanochlamys, M. cylindrica.

The shell is solid and strongly calcified, having one and half whorls, thus appearing more bulloid than other species of Melanochlamys. It has been reported from widely separate parts of New Zealand (Manukau Harbour, Whangateau Peninsula, Parengarenga Harbour, Nelson). It grows to approximately 3 cm in length.

  • Rudman, W.B. (1968)  Three new species of the Opisthobranch family Aglajidae from New Zealand. Transactions of the Royal Society of New Zealand, 10(23): 211-216.
  • Rudman, W.B. (1972)  On Melanochlamys  Cheeseman, 1881, a genus of the Aglajidae (Opisthobranchia: Gastropoda). Pacific Science, 26(1): 50-62, 8 figs
Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2005 (February 10) Melanochlamys lorrainae (Rudman, 1968). [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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