Video Series: Crimson Anemone

Presenting the vibrant Crimson Anemone as species number nine! This species is not often seen by beach-walkers and tide-poolers, as it is strictly a sub-tidal species.

 

Fun facts about Crimson Anemones:

 

Where do Crimson Anemones live?

 

Crimson anemones have a curious distribution, as they are found in areas with extreme current, and no current at all! Crimson Anemones are common on our side of the Discovery Passage as well as Quadra Island’s. Divers also spot the Crimson Anemone in Nanoose, a low-current region of the island well known to scuba divers!

 

Do Crimson Anemones sting?

 

While the sting of sea anemones may be fatal to small creatures, our own skin is too strong to feel the sting of local sea anemones. The same stinging cells that inject venom also ‘grip’ their prey and prevent it from escaping; this is why some anemones feel sticky!

Among local anemone species, the Crimson Anemone has particularly ‘weak’ stinging cells and as a result isn’t anywhere near as sticky as other species.

 

Who are Crimson Anemones related to?

 

If you think about it, doesn’t a sea anemone kind of look like an upside-down jellyfish? This is no coincidence! Anemones and Jellyfish both belong to a phylum of animals known as Cnidarians.

 

There are two main body plans among Cnidarians:

 

Polyp

  • In essence, a polyp is a Cnidarian that sticks to the seafloor and has its tentacles and mouth facing upwards. corals, sea anemones, and sea pens have polyp body plans.

 

Medusa

  • A medusa is a cnidarian that drifts through the sea, and has its tentacles and mouth facing downwards. Jellyfishes have medusa body plans (although some jellyfish live upside down, like the upside-down jellyfish!)

 

Do any species live around Crimson Anemones?

 

There are indeed several species that shelter under the Crimson Anemone! Two such species are the Candy-Stripe Shrimp and the Scaled Crab.

Candy-Stripe Shrimp are a very tiny, and very colourful species of shrimp that live at the base of the Crimson Anemone. They are even immune to the anemone’s sting, and can crawl out to the tips of the anemone’s tentacles to grab bits of food.

The Scaled Crab on the other hand, simply crouches underneath the crown of tentacles to shelter itself from predators such as the Giant Pacific Octopus. Octopus are very sensitive to anemone stings!

 

Weekly Video Series Activities!

 

This week we are sending you out to your local tide-pooling beach for some tide pool bingo! Willow Point Reef is a great place to start, just be sure you visit at a tide level beneath 1.5m! There are some great low tides coming up in the afternoon this week!

Check your local tide tables!

Send us your completed bingo sheet by email at: info@DiscoveryPassageAquarium.ca

Or tag us in your Instagram Post: @DPAquarium #DPAquarium

Or send it to us in a message on Facebook: DiscoveryPassageAquarium

 

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Click here to learn about the Opalescent Nudibranch! (Previous Post)

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