Sunday 12 August 2012

Dusk and anemones at Portnahaven

After the Gala, Lorna and I drove down to Portnahaven to do some crab fishing. We looked in some of the rockpools there (as is our want!) and were delighted to discover this Gem Anemone. Neither of us had seen it before. It is not rare, but it has only been recorded at a few locations in south-west Scotland and Shetland, including Portnahaven on another occasion! It is found on the shore in localities exposed to strong wave action but also in sheltered places. Its base is up to 25 mm in diameter and it has up to 48 tentacles, mottled in colour. We also saw a delicate Brittlestar and possibly another species of anemone, as well as the more common Beadlet Anemone.

Aulactinia verrucosa - Gem Anemone (bottom), tentacles retracted. The anemone on the top of the picture may be a different species.

Aulactinia verrucosa - Gem Anemone - tentacles extended.

Sunset over McKenzie Island.

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