03 April 2010

Special sea anemones on Beting Bemban Besar

For the first time, I saw this elusive sea anemone! For a while, we were not sure if this sea anemone still existed on our shores. Until Marcus saw one at Pulau Semakau.
A review of some photos taken by others at Semakau revealed earlier sightings too. But this is my first time seeing it, and our first sighting outside of Pulau Semakau.

The Leathery anemone (Heteractis crispa) is rather boringly pinkish grey. But has pink tips on the tentacles. And distinctive big bumps on the body column.
This one had a little anemone shrimp in it. The shrimp looks like the male of the kind usually seen in our other anemones: Periclimenes brevicarpalis.
The other amazing sighting was by Kok Sheng who found this large bright blue anemone!
From the pink spots on the body column, and the shape and arrangement of the tentacles, it seems to be some kind of carpet anemone (Stichodactyla sp.). How exciting!
I also saw two of these snaky sea anemones (Macrodactyla doreensis)!
Here's the second one I saw. I seldom see them on the Southern shores.
James also saw the Fire anemone (Actinodendron sp.) and the Alicia sea anemone (Alicia sp.)!

There were also many of the usual sea anemone we seen on our Southern shores: Frilly sea anemone (Phymanthus sp.), Wriggly star anemone (yet to be identified), Haddon's carpet anemone (Stichodactyla haddoni) and Giant carpet anemone (Stichodactyla gigantea) - alas, without resident anemonefish.
This, however, is not a sea anemone. It's a hard coral with anchor shaped tips (Euphyllia sp.). I couldn't see the skeleton so I don't know exactly which kind it is.
There were lots more interesting sightings on Beting Bemban Besar!

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