AUSTRALIA– A woman found an unidentified creature Sunday morning washed up on Mudjimba Beach.
Mount Coluum resident Debbie Higgs first released the picture of the strange creature on Instagram.
“I’ve just found this jellyfish washed up at Mudjimba -what the??” she wrote on the social media website.
Higgs was reportedly walking on the beach when she came across the body.
The”blob”, she said, is bright red and approximately 10-inch long.
“It looks like a slug, it’s got ribbing, I have never seen anything like it,” she explained.
Intrigued by the finding, the woman felt determined to find out what the animal really was. So she took the body with her and took more pictures in order to ease the identification process.
She says she has already asked a few experts.
“Had a few people scratching their heads; not our usual “jellyfish” that’s for sure!” Higgs said.
But it was Twitter user Really Angry Budgie, a “frustrated wannabe scientist” from Kaurna, the one who came up with the most plausible explanation.
“Success! Hexabranchus sanguineus, also known as Spanish Dancer,” he replied to the photographer.
It is not yet clear whether this is a positive identification.
Some people are also concerned this could be an invasive species.
“Should be taken to Wildlife and Fisheries to identify it. Could be foreign invasion from ship ballast,” Carmen Borg said.
Spanish dancers are members of the Nudibranchia group, which is composed of marine gastropod mollusks that shed their shell after the larval stage. This species inhabits the Indo-Pacific Ocean and the Red Sea.