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Marine Wildlife  Jewel Anemones

Photo: Beverley Hills

UK Safari Tip:
Need help identifying wildlife on the seashore? Try this beautifully illustrated fold out ID chart - click here

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Latin name: Corynactis viridis

Size: Closed approx. 10mm - tentacles approx. 25mm.

Found mainly around the west coasts of the UK from Cornwall to the Shetlands.

Months seen: All year round.

Habitat: Rocky coasts - especially below overhanging rocks.

Food: Marine invertebrates

Special features: The jewel anemone gets its name from its spectacular colouration. They are some of the most colourful anemones found in UK waters. The main body known as the ‘column' can be green, white, orange, blue, pink or red.

Each anemone has up to 100 knobbed tentacles. The tentacles are normally a contrasting colour to column. At the centre of the tentacles is the mouth.

The jewel anemone reproduces asexually in a process known as 'longitudinal fission' which basically means the anemone splits in half. The two resulting small anemones can then grow, and split again which is why these anemones can be found in large patches.

Jewel anemones look similar to a coral, but they lack a calcified skeleton

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UK Safari Marine Section

 © 2006 G. Bradley. All Rights Reserved