Bushy backed sea slug

Bushy backed sea slug (Dendronotus frondosus)

A beautiful nudibranch makes its home on feather stars on the frame of the winched Shallow Profiler Mooring, ~ 200 m water depth

The bushy backed sea slug (or nudibranch) is native to the Arctic, Atlantic, and Pacific Ocean. It feeds on hydroids like the Aglaophenia sp. seen on the shallow profiler, and uses the nematocysts it obtains from it for self-defense. Key characteristics of bushy backed sea slugs are the processes that protrude across its whole body, and the two rows of 5-8 bushy projections along its back. This species of nudibranch varies in color, and deeper coastal sea slugs are paler when compared to those from shallower water. Adults can grow to 10 cm in length. This nudibranch was found on a shallow winched profiler at a depth of 200 m at the cabled Oregon offshore site.