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Actinothoe sphyrodeta

(Gosse, 1858)

Erling Svensen Looking on my unidentifies pictures. Here there are 3 unidentified ones. All of them are small - only 2 (maximum) wide and 2 cm high. All pictures is from very exposed coast - on rock. When I say very exsposed - I really meen exposed. The waves can grow to 10 - 15 meters high, and the anemones on the pictures are only from 2 - 5 meter of seawater. The lowest picture to the left - I belive this one is the Sagartia elegans. The middel one looks like the Actinothoe sphyrodeta - but this one have never been seen in Norway (but one time must be the first....). I hope you can make comments and may be help?

Andy Horton Are the rocks buried and the disc protruding? With a long column wedged in between the rocks? Or are the anemones on bare rock exposed to the waves? Actinothoe is lightly adherent and can be peeled off easily. This is doubtful on wave battered shores?

Erling Svensen Hi Andy. The anemones are on the rock itself, not burried. I can not say if there are cracks in the rock, but it looks for me like they sit on the rock itself.

Andy Horton If you poke them lightly do they emit acontia? Any chance of a column picture?

Erling Svensen No, sorry. I will be better to do so....

Andy Horton This makes it difficult. I know what they look like, but the choice does not sit on bare rocks. What is the substrate and incline? Are they on a flat area of sea bed or on a slope? Is there sand or gravel on the beach during the quiet season. What time of year, during the storm season or in summer?

Erling Svensen They are on a slope, like a wall. There are no sand ore gravel as this is very exposed. I have not dived this locality since October last year as the waves have been to hard for 5 months now. Most of pictures from this locality is from summertime.

Andy Horton They are a perfect likeness for Sagartia troglodytes, but the habitat is completely wrong. This anemone will appear in calm weather in summertime, but it as a species found on flat shores where is found buried in sand/gravel but fastened to rocks underneath. Where there holes in bare rock Sagartia elegans is usually found. Bigger pictures may help.

Message posted on NE Atlantic Cnidaria on 13 Mar 2012
Neil Watson Is this an Elegant Anemones? It was on the wreck of the Louis Sheild, South Devon in about 5m of water.

Sarah Bowen Bit difficult to tell from this angle! You really need to see the column of it - if it's warty then it's the Sagartia elegans, but if it's striped it's Actinothoe sphyrodeta. Any other photos?

Neil Watson I don't think I have any more pics sorry; I will look. By the column do you mean the area in the middle of the tentacles?

Sarah Bowen Imagine the tentacles are the flower petals; the column is the stalk so you need to get really low down to look at it side on. The area in the middle is the mouth of the anemone. The one you've posted here looks fairly well buried in, but if you see them on rocks they sometimes stand out really well - here's one of mine from Strangford Lough recently. It's Actinothoe sphyrodeta (not the elegant one).

Neil Watson Perfect, thanks for the info.

Charlotte Bolton No, that's the disc - you generally need a side-on view as well as a top view, often before and after gently wafting the anemone to persuade it to retract its tentacles... ;-)

Message posted on Seasearch Identifications on 27 Aug 2013
Frances Dipper One of the best photos of Actinothoe sphyrodeta that I have seen

Message posted on NE Atlantic Cnidaria on 04 Jun 2012
Andy Horton What species would you call this one?

Christian Skauge Dunno... can't see it ;-)

Mary Restell nor me - bizarre. I saw it on notification email but have already deleted it so can't say if its Sagartia elegans or Actinothoe sphyrodeta. What was it?

Christian Skauge It's just his privacy settings I think :-)

Erling Svensen Actinia equina - called Hesteaktinie in norwegian, is very common in Norway. I have not heard about A. fragacea if it not have changed name?

Andy Horton http://www.glaucus.org.uk/fragacea.htm

Andy Horton 3 votes to 1 says this is a separate species to Actinia equina.

Message posted on NE Atlantic Cnidaria on 16 Jan 2013
Andy Horton This is not my photograph and I have never seen a British sea anemone with such pronounced stripes on its column: (I would not pen this as Sagartia elegans ???)

George Brown Actinothoe sphyrodeta.

Erling Svensen What about Sagartiogeton laceratus? We have them here in Norway, and I have always called them S. laceratus?

George Brown In my experience the habitat in the photo also looks too wrong. I only see S. laceratus in silty environments growing out of the mud, maybe anchored to a shell or pebble but never on bedrock. But what makes Norway so exciting is that there, everything is so different so who knows!

Andy Horton Actinothoe. I was thinking pof S laceratus at first. http://www.flickr.com/groups/cnidarians/

Message posted on NE Atlantic Cnidaria on 03 Jun 2012
Becky Hitchin A nice rockpool scene from Elmer Rock Islands. Wondering if the anemone is Sagartia elegans

Andy Horton Probably Actinothoe sphyrodeta

Becky Hitchin d'you know, that's what I meant to say. doh. But odd to see intertidally?

David Kipling What are the squirts becky?

Becky Hitchin They're Corella. Not sure whether eumyota or parallelogramma, can't remember offhand what parallelogramma looks like!

Andy Horton I occasionally see this sea anemone between the tides. Less than one a year on the Sussex coast.

Becky Hitchin We had 2 today :)

Claire Goodwin Hi Becky. Corella parallelogramma usually has a more translucent test. C. eumyota is an invasive species but common in several places - do you get it in your area? It does look the right colour (but hard to give definitive ID from this angle).

David Kipling If they look like Werther's Originals then they eumyota :)

David Kipling Although we could be techie and look at gut loop positions, but it is Sunday evening ...

Becky Hitchin The gut loop certainly very eumyota-ish. As did the colour. I'm just not that familiar with parallelogramma - we get eumyota only. I'm not entirely sure about Sussex, Claire Goodwin, but we've started to get them on the shore in a few places around Kent (and in marinas over the previous year) so it wouldn't surprise me to see them in Sussex too.

David Kipling I think a couple of reasons they're not C. parallelogramma (thinking of Penny's pics). First is the gut loop. C. parallelogramma has a very L-shaped gut, in fact the whole thing is quite square in shape, as opposed to the more rounded look of these. Second is that parallelogramma fix on by the bottom, not the side surface like these. So I'd say def not parallelogramma, but could live with eumyota (having only seen them once on a pontoon in Plymouth).

Becky Hitchin I'd be surprised if they weren't eumyota, I was mainly just wafting parallelogramma about as I don't know them. eumyota has a very J shaped loop, very corrugated in appearance

Becky Hitchin My main real sort of reservation is that the siphons here are much more orangey in colour over a bigger area than our Kent ones

Animalia (Kingdom)
  Cnidaria (Phylum)
    Anthozoa (Class)
      Hexacorallia (Subclass)
        Actiniaria (Order)
          Nyantheae (Suborder)
            Thenaria (Infraorder)
              Acontiaria (Superfamily)
                Sagartiidae (Family)
                  Actinothoe (Genus)
                    Actinothoe sphyrodeta (Species)
Associated Species