Monday, March 3, 2008

Waratah anemones (Actinia tenebrosa)

I took these two photos on the Penguin Island. These sea anemones are named after the red waratah flowers, the emblem of New South Wales. They are common in the intertidal zone around the island. Although they look like they are stuck to one spot, they do move slowly over rock surface towards food or to attack others.

A chiton (left) and a waratah anemone (or cherry anemone) (Actinia tenebrosa) with bright red tentacles showing. They use these to sting their prey (shrimp, worms and fish) and pull them towards their mouths (in the middle of the tentacles).

Contracted waratah anemones in globular states - just like blobs of jelly. They do this to avoid water loss when they are in the air.


navigator said...

Thanks for you info, found these little anenomes at Hawley Beach Tasmania and my little 3 year old was really curious what they were. Found an answer thanks to you. Cheers.

Tsun-Thai Chai said...

You're welcome! Good to know the blog is still useful.