Sea Angel

Sea Angel

Clione limacina

Learn more about Clione limacina from the Encyclopedia of Life

Encyclopedia of Life

Indre Kjerkebåen, Kristiansand, Norway
By Christian Skauge
Oslo, Norway, By Christian Skauge, Oslo, Norway

This exquisite sea slug, also known as a sea angel, is less than one inch long. It is typically found in the open sea of the Arctic and Antarctic regions during winter and spring. The sea angel sometimes occurs in such large groups that it becomes a suitable meal for baleen whales.

“Getting good photographs of sea angels can be very challenging. Divers usually find the tiny animals in mid-water at around 4 to 5 meters deep, and it’s hard to keep still while trying to frame them. Using a macro lens made it easier to locate the slug in the viewfinder. The greater focal length also reduced the amount of water between the lens and subject, minimizing the backscatter by plankton and particles.” —CS

Nikon D200; 60mm lens; 1/80 sec at ƒ/13; ISO 100; Inon Z-240 strobe (2); Nexus UW housing; custom-made strobe ring for mounting strobes on housing port; hand-held.