Alderia willowi

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Alderia willowi
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
(unranked): clade Heterobranchia
informal group Opisthobranchia
clade Sacoglossa
clade Plakobranchacea
Superfamily: Limapontioidea
Family: Limapontiidae
Genus: Alderia
Species: A. willowi
Binomial name
Alderia willowi
Krug, Patrick et al., 2007[1]

Alderia willowi is a species of sea slug, a marine gastropod mollusc in the family Limapontiidae. It is a sacoglossan.[1]

This species is endemic to California.[2] It was previously thought to be Alderia modesta, but there turned out to be a cryptic species pair.

This species is poecilogonous, in other words it has variable larval development modes.[1]

The slug was discovered by a team led by Patrick Krug of California State University, Los Angeles.[1] The species is named after Krug's grandmother, and after the fictional character Willow Rosenberg from Buffy the Vampire Slayer television series, because the variable reproductive modes of the sea slug are reminiscent of the switch in sexual orientation that the character Willow underwent in season 4 of the show.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d Krug, P. J.; et al. (2007). "A new poecilogonous species of sea slug (Opisthobranchia: Sacoglossa) from California: comparison with the planktotrophic congener Alderia modesta (Love'n, 1844)". Journal of Molluscan Studies. 73: 29–38. doi:10.1093/mollus/eyl025. ISSN 1464-3766. 
  2. ^ a b "Variable Larval Development Modes (poecilogony)". Krug Lab - Larval Ecology and Evolution. Retrieved 2009-06-19.