A field guide to Kenyan mangroves
Peronia spp. or Onchidium spp.
Zone: This slug-like creature can be found on tidal flats in front of mangroves.
Habitat: Open muddy areas Another smaller species is often found on the roots and trunks of R. mucronata.
Food: Sediment organic matter (see trail of excreted sediment in photo). Some species most likely feed primarily on micro-epiflora on mangrove tree roots and stems as is indicated by stable isotope studies (Bouillon et al., 2004).
Ecological notes: Occasionally seen on either sandy mud or dark organic mud.
Distinguishing characteristics: We found the sepcies pictured here on tidal flats and a smaller, darker species that appeared to be more strongly associated with mangrove trees.
Geographical range: Indo-Pacific (Richmond, 1997)
Bouillon S, Moens T, Overmeer I, Koedam N, & Dehairs F (2004) Resource utilization patterns of epifauna from mangrove forests with contrasting inputs of local versus imported organic matter. Marine Ecology Progress Series 278: 77-88. (reprint available here)
Richmond, M.D., 1997. A guide to the Seashores of Eastern Africa and the Western Indian Ocean Islands. Sida / Department for Research Cooperation, SAREC. Zanzibar, Tanzania. 448 pp.
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