Green Island (2013) | Diving the North Coast

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Green Island (04-07Apr13) 134_2.jpg
Gong Guan Harbor, Green Island -- Shown here is the Sacoglossa species Elysia ornata, a Plakobranchid.<br />
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Sacoglossans ('sap sucking slugs') live by ingesting the internal contents of algae, hence the adjective "sap-sucking".<br />
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Some sacoglossans simply digest the sap which they suck from the algae, but in some other species the slugs sequester and utilize within their own tissues, living chloroplasts from the algae they eat, a very unusual phenomenon known as kleptoplasty. This earns them the title of the "solar-powered sea slugs", and makes them unique among animals.