Laila cockerelli (MacFarland, 1905)

Common name:  Cockerellís Nudibranch


Synonyms:  None


 Class Gastropoda
     Superfamily Anadoridoidea
      Tribe Non-Suctoria
       Family Polyceridae
Laila cockerelli:  Coffin Rocks, WA
(Photo by: Robbie Wheeling, July, 2002)
Description:  Body usually 12 to 30 mm long.  It is white to yellowish, with distinctive red-orange color on marginal, club-shaped processes and on rhinophores.  There are spicules below the translucent body surface that produce a network of transparent lines.
Gills are obscure and contractile, but not retractile below body surface. In this dorid, it is usually mistaken for an aeolid because of itís very long dorsal papillae.  They often obscure the branchial plume.

How to Distinguish from Similar Species:

Geographical Range:  Vancouver Island (British Columbia) to Bahia de los Angeles (Baja California), uncommon at south end of range in winter.

Depth Range: Low intertidal to subtidal

Habitat: In tidepools, within intertidal zone.  In subtidal waters, and on rocky shores.

Biology/Natural History:  Species named for the English and American entomologist and malacologist T.D.A. Cockerella.  Its anatomy was described in detail early in the century. L. cockerelli have been observed feeding on the bryozoan Hinchsina velata.  In Vancouver area, spawning occurs from May to June.  The egg string is pale-pink; it spirals tightly and contains only about 6,500 eggs.

Return to:
Main Page Alphabetic Index Systematic Index Glossary


Dichotomous Keys:

Kozloff (1987)
General References:
Behrens, 1991
Morris et al., 1980

Scientific Articles:

The rhinophores and circle of gills are clearly visible on this individual from Northwest island.  Total length approx. 2 cm.
Photo by Dave Cowles, July 2005

Authors and Editors of Page:
Robbie Wheeling (2002):  Created original page
Edited by Hans Helmstetler 1-2003, Dave Cowles 2005