This nudibranch species was named after its discoverer: Neville Coleman and is arguably the most coveted nudibranch among underwater photography enthusiasts.
Melibe colemani, also known as the “ghost nudibranch” or “Coleman’s Melibe”, is a species of sea slug in the family Tethydidae. It is found in warm marine waters in the Coral Triangle region of Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. It can be regulary observed in the waters around Romblon Island.
Melibe colemani is a unique creature for a number of reasons. First, it is almost completely transparent, with its internal organs visible to the naked eye. This transparency is thought to be an adaptation to its predatory lifestyle, as it allows the sea slug to blend in with its surroundings and ambush its prey.
Second, Melibe colemani has a network of brown tubules across its body. These tubules are actually its digestive glands, and they give the sea slug a stringy, almost snot-like appearance.
Third, Melibe colemani is an active predator. Unlike most nudibranchs, which feed on sessile invertebrates, Melibe colemani hunts for its prey. It uses its oral hood to capture small crustaceans and other animals.
Melibe colemani is a relatively rare species, and it is not often seen by divers. However, it is a fascinating creature, and its unique appearance and behavior make it a sought-after target for underwater photographers.
Here are some additional facts about Melibe colemani:
- It is about 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm) in length.
- It is a hermaphroditic species, meaning that each individual can produce both eggs and sperm.
- Its diet consists of small crustaceans, worms, and other invertebrates.
Melibe colemani is a fascinating and unique creature that is still relatively poorly understood. However, its beauty and rarity make it a popular target for divers and underwater photographers alike.