Meet the Nudibranchs…jewels in the ocean

coryphella lineata

Say hello to these beauties, spotted deep in the ocean near the Skomer Marine Nature Reserve in Pembrokeshire, Wales, during annual surveying by Natural Resources Wales.

Nudibranches, or sea slugs as they are more commonly known, are not your average slug, and come in a variety of different shapes and dazzling colours.  This year, the surveys identified 51 different species of these colourful creatures.

Kate Lock, Marine Conservation Officer, Natural Resources Wales explains:

“Sea slugs are carnivores, at the top of the food chain, so their presence tells us a lot about the eco-system as a whole.  Each species has its own particular prey, so if there are lots of different species at the top, then the supporting eco-system must be pretty healthy too.

“We’re lucky at Skomer to have such a huge variety of species, all uniquely spectacular.  Around 68% of the total UK species can be found here in just a 13.3 kilometre area.”

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