4th Gold Coast Sea Slug Census
Held 28-29 September 2019
Words by Deb Aston (Gold Coast Sea Slug Census Committee).
The support received for this event from the dive industry and divers has been amazing and this year we had a record amount of photos and data returned from 56 participants. The dive conditions were again not perfect and in high surge conditions a lot of sea slugs will not be out in the open and easy to find. So these participants have done an amazing job to find 112 species in total.
The winner of the Adreno Sea Slug Behaviour Photo was Andrew Harring picture of two Bubble Shells Bullina lineata possibly beginning courtship. The Sea Slugs were little shy this year and very few pictures were captured this year showing off their amazing behaviour. Adreno have been great supporters of the Census over the past three years and we thank them for this amazing support.
The knowledge base of participants has grown enormously and this is good news for the marine environment but also the dive industry. Divers have learnt to slow down their dives and to look closer and have discovered not only Sea Slugs but the amazing macro world and are now happy to dive in less than perfect visibility and dive conditions.
To date we now have 304 species of Sea Slugs recorded for the Gold Coast with 180 species recorded from the Gold Coast Seaway alone. Funny that back in 2011, when I first started recording species on the Gold Coast, people would say to me there are no Sea Slugs in the Seaway!!! My Facebook feed is now full of the pics of the many species found on a regular basis.
There are approximately 3000 named species of Sea Slugs with another possible 3000 that are unnamed so lots more to find, so the hunt will continue!
For further information see the Facebook Group – Gold Coast Sea Slug Census or email firstname.lastname@example.org