Mystery of the orange anemone solved (for now)

Well after much debate we seem to have solved the mystery of the small orange anemones first observed by @donnacha . It looks like his hunch (https://inaturalist.nz/observations/9896191#comment-1353340) was right as the current consensus of opinion is that they are the southern New Zealand species Habrosanthus bathamae (Sagartiidae) - see https://inaturalist.nz/observations/11720421. The few images of this species available online show specimens exposed at low water that are much more brightly coloured than the ones so far photographed in the marine reserve. Its not clear to me at least if this is a photographic artifact, or because of the relatively small size of the ones seen so far. That aside, reference to Steve Cook's 'New Zealand Coastal Marine Invertebrates' revealed images of specimens identified as H. bathamae (pg. 162) that are almost identical to those photographed by @sarahmilicich. The Cook book does it again.

Posted by clinton clinton, May 02, 2018 10:13

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Great to have another species confirmed for Wellington, if you are right the known distribution has been extended from just 'Otago' to also Wellington and hence most likely the coast in between. The more I research the species, the more your ID seems to match. I have updated the guide.

Posted by tony_wills 12 months ago (Flag)

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