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Family  Limacinidae

 

 

 

 

The Limacinidae, commonly known as sea butterflies, occur in the plankton, remaining in the water column throughout their entire life. They have a minute sinistral shell, up to 2 mm in size. They are equipped with two wings or parapodia used in swimming, but can withdraw completely into the shell. Limacinids occur in the tropical and subtropical regions of all oceans, where they may be abundant. They are usually collected in plankton trawls.

Four species of this family are recorded from NSW. All have an external shell:

Heliconoides inflatus (d'Orbigny, 1835)

Limacina bulimoides (d'Orbigny, 1834)

Limacina lesueurii (d'Orbigny, 1835)

Thielea helicoides (Jeffreys, 1877)

 


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