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Cnidopus verater (Family Actiniidae)

Green Anemone


This anemone has a temperate Australian distribution that ranges from southern Qld around southern shores, including NSW, Vic, Tas to southern WA. (QLD, NSW, VIC, TAS, SA, WA)


The Green Anemone is coloured a uniform emerald to olive green, or occasionally brown, with lighter green tentacles. It is found on rocky ocean coasts. The smooth, narrow tentacles are 4 cm long and do not have markings on them. The mouth disk grows to between 40-80mm in diameter. The anemone grows to a diameter of between 50-70mm. The well-developed column has a prominent row of bumps at the base that decrease in size towards top, where the column is smooth Although this is not the sand anemone, Oulactis muscosa, sand grains and bits of shell are often attached to the column.

Ecology/Way of Life:

The Green Anemone prefers crevices and cracks in the rock and also occurs in intertidal pools on rocky coasts of moderate wave energy. On some shores it is quite common.

Interaction with Humans/Threats:

Although not as common as the sand anemone, The Green Anemone is still quite common on many rocky ocean shores and is probably not under threat from human activity.

Other Comments:

Cnidopus verater, Drayton, 1848. Cnidopus comes from the Greek word knide, that means nettle, referring to the stinging nematocysts of the anemone, while opus is a Latin word meaning work. Further Reading:

Bennett, I. (1987). W. J. Dakin's classic study: Australian Seashores: a guide to the temperate shores for the beach-lover, the naturalist, the shore-fisherman and the student. p,175, Angus & Robertson.

Davey, K. (1998) A Photographic Guide to Seashore Life of Australia. p.33, New Holland Press, Sydney.

Marine Research Group of Victoria (1984). Coastal Invertebtrates of Victoria: An atlas of selected species. p.12, Museum of Victoria.

Shepherd, S.A. & Thomas, I.M. (1989). Marine Invertebrates of Southern Australia. Pt. II. p.167, South Australian Govt. Printing.


Text, map & photograph by Keith Davey.

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