Animal Species:Waratah Anemone

The Waratah Anemone is named after the beautiful red Waratah flower that is the emblem of New South Wales.

Waratah Anemone - Actinia tenebrosa

Dr Isobel Bennett © Australian Museum

Standard Common Name

Waratah Anemone

Alternative Name/s

Cherry Anemone

Identification

This small, brown-red anemone is the most noticeable species of anemone on Sydney's rocky shores.

Size range

4 cm

Distribution

The Waratah Anemone is found throughout southern Australia.

Habitat

The Waratah Anemone lives on intertidal rocky shores.

Other behaviours and adaptations

At low tide the Waratah Anemone looks like a small red blob on crevices near rock pools. In this state it has all its tentacles drawn in to minimise its exposure to the air while it waits for the return of the tide. Quite often, a number of small anemones will be near the adult. This is because the young are released, fully developed, through the adult anemone's mouth. The offspring attach to the nearest rock surface available. At high tide or in rock pools with plenty of water, the anemone opens out to feed, unfurling its beautiful red tentacles.

Classification

Species:
tenebrosa
Genus:
Actinia
Family:
Actiniidae
Suborder:
Endocoelantheae
Order:
Actiniaria
Subclass:
Hexacorallia
Phylum:
Cnidaria
Kingdom:
Animalia

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Tags sea anemones., sea anemones, anthozoans, invertebrates, identification, wildlife of sydney,