Southern range extensions for twelve heterobranch sea slugs (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) on the eastern coast of Australia
Nimbs, MJ, Larkin, M, Davis, TR, Harasti, D, Willan, RC & Smith, SDA 2016, 'Southern range extensions for twelve heterobranch sea slugs (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) on the eastern coast of Australia', Marine Biodivesity Records, vol. 9.
Port Stephens, on the central New South Wales coast, provides ideal oceanographic and benthic conditions for the settlement and growth of larvae of tropical species delivered from the north by the East Australian Current. The popularity of the bay for recreational and scientific diving has facilitated extensive documentation of the biota over several decades, confirming its high biodiversity. Of the 313 species of heterobranch sea slugs recorded from Port Stephens to date, 30 are not known to occur further south. Our observations increase the number of taxa with a southern distribution limit at Port Stephens by 12 species and add to a growing list of marine taxa that are progressively extending their southern range, potentially as a result of climate change.