No common name

Notoplana acticola

ORDER Polycladida

FAMILY Leptoplanidae

TAXONOMY

Notoplana acticola (Boone, 1929), Monterey Bay, California, United States.

OTHER COMMON NAMES None known.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Adults are 1-2.4 in (25-60 mm) long when extended, body usually widest anteriorly, tapering posteriorly; tentacular eyes in rounded clusters with scattered eyes lying anterior, posterior, and sometimes lateral to them; about 25 cerebral eyes occur in an elongate band; eyes consist of single, cup-shaped pigment cell covering 6-10 retinal cells; color tan or pale gray with darker markings along midline.

DISTRIBUTION

Pacific coast of United States.

HABITAT

Rocky intertidal and subtidal zones.

BEHAVIOR

Experimental severing of main nerve pathways resulted in rapid repair of nerves and pathways.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Can ingest prey up to half its size. Feeds on limpets (Collisella digitalis), small acorn barnacles, and captive worms, and have been observed eating the red nudibranch (Rostanga pulchra) in captivity.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Functional hermaphrodites throughout the year with mature sperm and eggs present; a small number of worms were found with only ovaries in the spring and 10-50% of the population only had testes throughout the year; two-thirds of all worms had sperm in their seminal receptacles, indicating that mating had taken place; egg deposition occurs from late spring to early fall.

CONSERVATION STATUS Not threatened.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

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