We take a look at thecacera pacifica, known as the “Pikachu sea slug” in Japan, which many say is the real-life inspiration for the Pokémon character.

A couple of weeks ago, Japanese teacher-celebrity Osamu Hayashi introduced viewers to an adorable little sea slug known as thecacera pacifica on his popular Japanese television program Hayashi-sensei ga Odoroku Hatsumimi Gaku, or Professor Hayashi’s School of Surprising Second-Hand Knowledge. What makes this marine creature extra special is its incredible likeness to Pikachu, the star character of the popular Pokémon franchise, and while the species has made news in the past, its recent television spotlight introduced even more people to its unusual appearance, drawing attention to the sweet bright-coloured slug all over again.

While die-hard fans of the franchise may have seen this slug before, it’s now captivating even more legions of admirers, particularly those who have recently come to love the series through the hugely popular mobile game Pokémon Go.

The slug’s likeness to the electric Pokémon needs no explanation, with its bright-coloured body and long, pointy black-tipped ears earning it the nickname “Pikachu Sea Slug” in Japan.

While the cute critter can be found along coastal regions in Japan like the Izu Peninsula, Bonin Islands, and Yakushima, it also appears on land too, in the form of cute figurines and pendants.

It’s not common to find sea slugs like these in aquariums, but if you’re in Japan, you can view approximately 25 species at Osaka Aquarium, where they have 120 animals on display.

With its unusual colouring and otherworldy appearance, the gorgeous thecacera pacifica is not the only creature to invoke an anime doppelgänger in the well-known Pokémon series. To see more Pokémon in the real-world, check out this cute collection!

Source: Spotlight
Top Image: Twitter/@sazatinn0209