Bug of the Month June 2014: Florida Leatherleaf Slug guards clutch of Eggs

Subject: Slug eggs
Location: Houston, TX
May 31, 2014 5:57 pm
Found this under a pot planter on a warm day 5-31-14 in Houston/Galveston, TX area. It appears to be a slug with its eggs. However, it doesn’t seem like a typical slug. The dorsal side is more rough while the underside is more slimy. As we messed with it, it snugged up with the eggs more. When we left it alone for a minute, the eyes came out and it began moving quite a bit.
Signature: W. Parks

Sluglike Creature Guards clutch of eggs
Leatherleaf Slug with clutch of eggs

Dear W. Parks,
Thanks for commenting on an Unknown Eggs posting from our archives and then sending your own documentation.  The creature in your image does appear to be sluglike, but we are not certain of its identity.  The clutch of eggs looks identical to that from our archives, and it is also from Texas.  We are going to feature your submission as our Bug of the Month for June 2014 even though we cannot identify it at this time.  We will attempt to research this matter.

Sluglike Creature guards clutch of eggs
Leatherleaf Slug with clutch of eggs

We did a search for “Slug Eggs” and quickly found a matching image (figure 2) on the University of Florida Featured Creatures page and it is identified as the egg cluster of Leidyula floridana, the Florida Leatherleaf Slug.  Further down the page (figures 16 and 17) the Florida Leatherleaf Slug is pictured, and it is described as being:  “native to the Caribbean (Cuba to Jamaica) and southern Florida. Formerly found only in southern and central Florida, it has since has spread to northernmost Florida, and also is found in Louisiana, Texas, and northeastern Mexico, suggesting either that the species is more widespread than previous records indicated or that it is being relocated via commerce.”


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