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You are here:   animal list > Pseudoceros ferrugineus



Pseudoceros ferrugineus
Fushsia Flatworm

Ronan Lynch (2011)

© Ryanphotographic       


Fact Sheet


Brief Summary


Life cycle



Visual Behaviour

Morphology and Physiology

External Morphology

Internal Anatomy

References & More Information


Brief Summary

Pseudoceros ferrugineus are acoelomate bilaterians, which are found in benthic communities in tropical regions (Newman and Schupp, 2002; Rawlinson and Livaitis, 2008; Hing and Newman, 1998). Pseudoceros ferrugineus are in the order Polycladida, which are known to be species-rich throughout the Indo-Pacific region (Newman and Schupp, 2002). There are two suborders of Polycladida; Cotylea and Acotylean (Rawlinson and Lavaitis, 2008). Pseudoceros ferrugineus is part of the Cotylea suborder which is known to contain a lot of free-living flatworms, whereas the suborder Acotylean contains species which rely on molluscs and echinoderms for nutrients (Rawlinson and Livaitis, 2008).

Pseudoceros ferrugineus- with curtesy from Keiki Stender

The brightly coloured patterns associated with flatworms are a predominate feature and are often mistaken for nudibranchs (Newman and Schupp 2002; Hing and Newman, 1998). Pseudoceros ferrugineus is dorso-ventrally flattened, leaf-shaped and can stick to the surface of rocks or rubble by using a film of mucus as a seal. Although not a lot is known about this particular species of Platyhelminth, they are thought to play an important ecological role as a predator in the cryptic microbenthos (Rawlinson and Livaitis, 2008). These organisms are usually found under rubble and boulders at the reef crest and can also be found under ledges at the reef slope (Newman and Schupp, 2002; Newman and Cannon, 1995). This species is commonly associated with eating many types of colonial ascidians, although which species of ascidian they predominately feed on has not specifically been identified (Schupp et al., 1999, Newman and Schupp, 2002). This species is not well known as few studies have researched their behaviour, feeding preferences, reproduction or their ability to detect light.