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MEET THE MARINE LIFE

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JEWEL ANEMONE

Scientific name: Corynactis viridis

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It's easy to see where the jewel anemone got its name - the tiny colourful blobs that tip its tentacles look like jewels! Forming dense, colourful carpets on rocky overhangs, jewel anemones are one of the UK's most beautiful underwater sights.

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Jewel anemones come in a stunning array of colours: pink, purple, yellow, green, orange and more. The live on hard surfaces beneath the sea, from rocky outcrops to pier legs. Each anemone has around 100 tentacles, each with a small round blob on the end. These little blobs are white or another contrasting colour to their body and look a lot like little jewels! Jewel anemones reproduce asexually - meaning a single anemone will split into two anemones. This can create a beautiful patchwork effect where they live - with those of each colour budding from a single individual. They feed on small shrimps and fish that they catch with their stinging tentacles. They live in shallow waters down to between 50 and 80m.

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DID YOU KNOW...?

Jewel anemones are more closely related to corals than to other anemone species. Truth be told, they aren't really anemones at all!

Often large colonies of Jewel Anemones cover the walls of underwater caves, with sheets of polyps connected by a single base. The edge of a colony is usually clearly defined as adjoining colonies are often a different colour. Cave walls can be a spectacular patchwork of different colours as colonies compete with each other for space.

 

Like other anemones, the jewel anemone can reproduce asexually by splitting, which leads to clusters of identically coloured clones,

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andy@diveprojectcornwall.co.uk |      07711 160 590 |       LINKEDIN

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