Rostanga anthelia is a small pale reddish discodorid found
living amongst algae probably searching for small sponges
as food. It was originally described by Antonio Perrone
from the Italian peninsula and this is the first record of
the species outside of Italy.
Propodial tentacles: 'Present' - bilaminate propodium. Oral tentacles: 2 in number, short. Rhinophores: Pale cream coloured, finely lamellate and
retractable. Cerata: Absent. Gills: Retractable, unipinnate, cream in colour with
ocassional dark red spots. Body: Flattish, rounded and completely covered with
tubercules. The tubercules are short and with spicules at
the top. The colour varies from pinkish to pale red
withscattered darker red spots. The area around the
rhinophores has white tubercules and the area between
the rhinophores is dark (compare with Rostanga rubra).
The dorsal edge is lined with scatted cream tubercules. Foot: Pale cream, without appendages.
Size range: 4-8mm. Very rare.
Specific characteristics: This species can easily be
identified to genus level but may be confused with
Rostanga rubra, present also in the Mediterranean. The
pale tubercules around the rhinophores and the dark
patch between the rhinphores are good specific
characters to separate the two species.