[Coral-List] seeking info on coral parasite

julian julian at twolittlefishies.com
Mon Apr 26 11:46:39 EDT 2004

Without a good photo or specimen it is impossible to say for sure what it
is, but reef aquarium keepers sometimes have trouble with Cuthona spp.
nudibranchs. They are very small, in the size range you gave. They usually
affect Montipora spp., and sometimes Porites. I have not heard of them on
Pavona cactus, but you may have a species that focuses its attention and
appetite on that coral.

You should post a photo on the Seaslug forum and have a look at Cuthona to
see if that genus seems to fit your slug.

Julian Sprung

> From: SFerse at aol.com
> Date: Mon, 26 Apr 2004 08:10:53 -0400
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: [Coral-List] seeking info on coral parasite
> Dear coral listers,
> I recently finished the field study for my masters degree in Java/Indonesia.
> One of the species I was working with, Pavona cactus, was infected with a
> parasite, apparently a nudibranch, a few weeks after the beginning of my
> experiment on the local reef. Infestation lead to high mortality (>80 %)
> within a few months. The parasites were small (1-3 mm), of a brown color
> similar to that of the coral host, and had several appandices on each side,
> giving in the superficial appearance of a polychaete.
> For my thesis, I am seeking any available information (papers, postings,
> personal observations) on the nature of these parasites. Are there any
> observations from other coral species? Any suggestions would be much
> appreciated. Please feel free to send me an e-mail directly at sferse at aol.com.
> Thank you
> Sebastian Ferse
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