Observations on the ecology of the burrowing mud anemone, Ceriantheopsis americanus, in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island

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Observations on the ecology of the burrowing mud anemone, Ceriantheopsis americanus, in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island

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Title: Observations on the ecology of the burrowing mud anemone, Ceriantheopsis americanus, in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island
Author: Klos, E; Holohan, BA
Abstract: Ceriantheopsis americanus, is an abundant organism in Narragansett Bay. They live in tubes and when fully extended have tentacular crowns 5-10 cm in diameter which protrude about 10 cm above the sediment surface. Although the Bay has been extensively studied, the occurrence of Ceriantheopsis americanus escaped mention until recently because anemones withdraw rapidly into their burrows and usually escape capture by traditional sampling grabs and cores. Direct in situ observation by divers has been our primary approach to studying them in nature. Since 1975 divers have employed techniques to map their distribution and study their behavior. One phenomenon we have documented is that in late August all mud anemones vanish from view. They re-appear on the benthic surface in October at the same density and size distribution as prior to their disappearance. One hypothesis is that they burrow deep into the mud to avoid predation by schools of scup (Stenotomus chrysops). Enclosure experiments indicate that the anemones are voracious carnivores which feed both from the water column and sediment surface.
Description: American Academy of Underwater Sciences (http://www.aaus.org/)
URI: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/9665
Date: 1995

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