Cataphellia brodricii (Gosse, 1859)

Cataphellia brodricii

Description: The base of this sea anemone is adherent and fairly wide. The column is divided into scapus and scapulus, the scapus with a thick, soft cuticle and inconspicuous, small, solid tubercles. The tentacles are arranged in multiples of six. Its size is up to 50mm across the base. The disc and tentacles have a delicate pattern picked out in yellow or cream, and various shades of brown or purplish brown. The scapulus has six dark brown patches on paler ground, the throat is blackish. Acontia may be emitted from base of column or mouth. Reproduces by viviparity.

Habitat: Occurs in the kelp zone on lower shore or in the shallow sublittoral, on bedrock, boulders or stones, often in strong tidal streams and sand scoured habitats. Often occurs attached to rock beneath shallow layer of sand, with just the disc and tentacles protruding - well camouflaged and difficult to find; closes very quickly when disturbed.

Distribution: Found in the extreme southwest of England - Devon and Cornwall, also from north France. In Ireland it is known from Gasconane Sound in the southwest and near the Saltee Islands and Carnsore Point in the southeast. Rather local but few records are probably due to the species cryptic habits rather than rarity. Records from outside above area would be welcomed.

Similar Species: Differs from Hormathia coronata by blackish throat, lack of red colouration and only six dark patches on scapulus; from Phellia gausapata by different disc pattern and general coloration.

Key Identification Features:

Distribution Map: NBN map : National Biodiversity Network mapping facility, data for UK.

WoRMS: Species record : World Register of Marine Species.

iNaturalist: Species account : iNaturalist World Species Observations database

 Picton, B.E. & Morrow, C.C. (2016). Cataphellia brodricii (Gosse, 1859). [In] Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland. Accessed on 2024-05-30

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