Reference - Heteractis Type Anemones, Page 7
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Heteractis Type Anemones


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Heteractis crispa

The tentacles are long and numerous, so many in fact that they intertwine at times. They are tapered towards the tip, the latter often being blue or mauve or green. Yellow tips have been seen too but are very rare. Daphne Fautin (1992) suggests in here writings that up to 800 tentacles may be present on larger specimens.

The oral disk is usually large (at least in nature). It is not well visible because of the large number of tentacles that are attached to it. The nematocysts are strong and can inflict a real painful sensation when touched.

The body or stem has "verrucae", (light to strong suction cells) as described earlier. The lower part of the body is usually buried in the sediment. In aquaria this anemone does real well if placed on live sand (this applies to H. aurora as well). When threatened or in danger, the anemone will bury itself completely, retracting in its entirety in the sand or sediment. Attached to dead coral pieces as well by means of its verrucae.

When disturbed the tentacles shorten rapidly and shrivel up. When no clown fish inhabit this anemone, the tentacles tend to be short as well (Fautin, 1992). This anemone is also known by the name "Leather anemone".

Below is a short list of clown fish known to form symbiotic relations with this anemone:

Heteractis crispa is very easy to identify if you see anemones in a store: just look for the many many longish tentacles that seem so numerous that you cannot see the mouth opening, or if you can, you will barely see it.

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