Special Finds at the MLCD!

While helping out with the benthic habitat survey today, I had some down time to go out and explore.  While looking at algae I came across two uncommonly seen visitors to the Waikīkī MLCD. The first one being what I believe (still trying to confirm) to be the Okinawa Nudibranch, Gymnodoris okinawae.  This nudibranch is distributed throughout the Hawaiian Islands but is rarely seen.  It only grows to about 1 inch in length and is found under rocks in shallow water.  It is more widely distributed and commonly found throughout the Indo-Pacific region.

The second special species I encountered was the Oval Squid, Sepioteuthis lessoniana, or muhe’e in Hawaiian.  While researching this species I found that some people call this species the Bigfin Reef squid in Hawai’i, although technically the bigfin squid is a completely different species (hence, the importance of scientific names).  Years ago, this species was classified as scarce but recently it seems to be making a comeback.

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