Paraphellia expansa (Haddon, 1886)

Paraphellia expansa

Description: This sea anemone has a very wide base, which is capable of firm adhesion but may be free. The column is conical, divided into scapus and scapulus, the scapus is usually covered with sand, sometimes with cuticle. The tentacles are moderate in length, arranged in multiples of six. Up to 60mm across base, span of tentacles to 30mm. The column is pale buff, disc and tentacles buff with a pattern of dark brown, gold and white.

Habitat: Lives buried in sand or gravel with the broad base unattached and acting as an anchor; sometimes attached to shells or stones. Exclusively sublittoral. Retracts very fast when disturbed.

Distribution: Occasional in English Channel, Irish Sea, and around southwest Ireland. Any new records would be welcomed.

Similar Species: Disc pattern fairly similar to Hormathia coronata and Cataphellia brodricii but these possess solid tubercles on the column which are lacking in Paraphellia.

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). Paraphellia expansa (Haddon, 1886). [In] Encyclopedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland. Accessed on 2024-04-16

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