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Overview

Brief Summary

Mud sagartias have a nondescript colored column, which you rarely see since only the tentacles stick out of the bottom. Unlike the column, the tentacles are very colorful. Although you don't see it, the anemone is often attached to small shells or stones in the sand. During a storm or rapid currents, mud sagartias sometimes break loose from the sea bottom and wash on to the beach as slimy balls. When a mud sagartia is frightened, it retracts quickly into the sea bottom.
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Comprehensive Description

Biology: Nematocysts

More info
LocationImageCnidae TypeRange of
Lengths (m)
Range of
Widths (m)
nNState
Carlgren O., 1940
Acontia
N/A basitrichs  14 - 15  x  2 -   / fired
microbasic amastigophores  20 - 21  x  4 -   /
Actinopharynx
N/A basitrichs  24 - 26  x  2.5 -   /
N/A microbasic p-mastigophores  22 - 24  x  4.5 - 5  /
Column
N/A basitrichs  11 - 12  x  2 -   /
N/A microbasic amastigophores  12 - 14  x  3.5 - 4  /
Filaments
N/A basitrichs  17 - 21  x  2 - 2.5  /
microbasic p-mastigophores  12 - 24  x  4.5 - 5  /
Tentacles
N/A basitrichs  14 - 22  x  2 - 2.5  /
N/A microbasic amastigophores  14 - 17  x  2.5 - 3  /
Riemann-Z?ck K., 1969
Acontia
N/A amastigophores  17 - 29  x   -   /
N/A basitrichs  12 - 17  x   -   /
Tentacles
N/A amastigophores  14 - 18  x   -   /
N/A basitrichs  10 - 23  x   -   /
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Description

This sea anemone has a wide and moderately adherent base. The column is similar to Sagartia elegans but suckers less conspicuous, acontia not very readily emitted. The tentacles are moderate in length, arranged in multiples of six, up to 200. Colour is extremely variable: column dull-greenish, whitish, buff, etc. usually with pale stripes at base. Disc with a pattern or plain, tentacles banded or plain. Occurs in most colours or combinations of these. Large form (decorata) typically up to 50mm across base, 100mm tall. Distinguished from Cereus pedunculatus by smaller number of tentacles and narrower disc; see also Sagartia elegans for differences between these species.
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© National Museums Northern Ireland and its licensors

Source: Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland

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Distribution

Common on all coasts of the British Isles except the English Channel, where it is infrequent. Occurs on all European coasts, including the Mediterranean.
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Ecology

Habitat

coastal to shelf
  • UNESCO-IOC Register of Marine Organisms
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Source: World Register of Marine Species

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Depth range based on 56 specimens in 3 taxa.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 24 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 60.5
  Temperature range (°C): 8.039 - 12.270
  Nitrate (umol/L): 3.010 - 12.040
  Salinity (PPS): 32.851 - 35.343
  Oxygen (ml/l): 6.104 - 6.665
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.333 - 0.841
  Silicate (umol/l): 2.052 - 7.673

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 60.5

Temperature range (°C): 8.039 - 12.270

Nitrate (umol/L): 3.010 - 12.040

Salinity (PPS): 32.851 - 35.343

Oxygen (ml/l): 6.104 - 6.665

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.333 - 0.841

Silicate (umol/l): 2.052 - 7.673
 
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On the shore or shallow sublittoral. Attaches to rocks, etc., but more commonly occurs buried in mud, sand or gravel, attached to a buried stone or shell. Occasional in brackish water.
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Wikipedia

Sagartia troglodytes

Sagartia troglodytes is a species of sea anemone in the family Sagartiidae, also known as the mud sagartia or the cave-dwelling anemone.

Contents

Description

The base is anchored in holes in the rock and is a little wider than the column. This is smooth and firm, extending to a length several times its width, and covered in sticky suckers on its upper part. The usually flat oral disc is finely patterned and surrounded by four or five rings of numerous short tentacles, the longest ones being nearest the mouth. This is raised on a slight mound at the centre of the disc. The general colour is varying sombre shade of olive green or brown with vertical striations on the column. The radial striations on the oral disc are finely patterned in grey, white and black and the tentacles are translucent and banded in white and grey. At the base of each tentacle there is a distinctive black mark shaped like a Roman capital letter "B".[2] Pieces of gravel and fragments of shell are often stuck to the upper part of the column. In size, the column can grow to a diameter of an inch (2.5cm) and a length of two inches (5cm) but most specimens are much smaller than this.[3]

Distribution and habitat

S. troglodytes is found in coastal regions of the north east Atlantic Ocean, the North Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.[1] It is common round the coasts of Britain between the tide marks but is relatively little observed because it is well camouflaged and is often hidden in cracks, under overhangs, in rock pools, under seaweed, among mussels or half buried in sand and mud with just its tentacles projecting.[3] In Morecambe Bay, England, it is found anchored to stones buried several inches beneath the surface of this expanse of mudflats, or sometimes not even attached at all but living freely. It can retract into a spherical form when disturbed and no longer be visible from the surface.[2]

Biology

Like other sea anemones, S. troglodytes is a carnivore and feeds on small invertebrates which it traps with its tentacles and channels into its mouth. Any undigested pieces are expelled from the mouth over the period of a few hours or days.[2]

S. troglodytes is a hermaphrodite with gonads inside the body cavity. The eggs are discharged from the mouth, being wafted out individually by cilia on the tentacles. The sperm are produced separately also emanating from the mouth when they give the appearance of a white plume being liberated into the water column. The fertilised egg develops into a planula larva which becomes part of the zooplankton and later settles and develops into a new individual. The species can also reproduce asexually by the liberation of "ciliated germs" through the walls of the lower column.[2]

References

  1. ^ a b Sagartia troglodytes (Price in Johnston, 1847) World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
  2. ^ a b c d Sagartia troglodytes Philip Henry Gosse. A history of the British sea-anemones and corals. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
  3. ^ a b John Barrett & C. M. Young (1958). Collins Pocket Guide to the Sea Shore. p. 59.
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