Mini Carpet Anemone

Mini Carpet Anemone Stichodactyla tapetum

Type of Animal:
Sea Anemone

Shore areas among seagrasses


Small anemone, pink/purple center, bubble-like polyps, short bead-like tentacles across surface, longer tentacle fringe along outer rim, color can be different shades of brown/tan/green, reddish around edges, comes in different color forms, large flattened body

Shrimp, krill, fish, squid

Status in Wild:

Found in colonies of 4-50 anemones

Young: Planula
Group: Colony
1-5 in

Less than 1 day 

Life Span:
10-25 years in captivity, 50-60 years in wild

These anemones have very potent stings & as a result, have virtually no predators. Stings not deadly to humans but fairly painful.
Uses sticky tentacles & stinging cells within them to catch prey & in defense.
Like most other anemones, can reproduce sexually & asexually. When reproducing sexually, they broadcast spawn w/ sperm/eggs being released into water column simultaneously. When reproducing asexually, they do so by splitting/fission.
After fertilization, eggs settle on substrate forming new anemones.
Unlike many tropical/subtropical sea anemones, they rarely host clownfish/anemonefish & sometimes eat them. However, they will host anemone crabs & anemone shrimp.
Like other anemones, they’re sit-and-wait predators.
While appearing motionless, they expand/contract very slowly.
Sometimes mistaken for juveniles/young of larger carpet anemones.
Symbiotic zooxanthellae within body use light producing sugars for energy/growth.
Besides using stinging tentacles in feeding/defense, they’ll also use them to keep corals/other anemone species out of territory.
They’re very sensitive to touch.

Fun Fact(s):
Keeping anemones is not for beginner aquarists.
Without adequate lighting, they’ll expel photosynthetic symbiotic zooxanthellae.
Sometimes called Maxi-Mini Carpet Anemones & Maxi-Mini Pizza Anemones.
Stickier anemones tend to be healthier.
Sometimes appear in aquarium trade.
Once settled in particular location, they’ll most often stay there for the rest of their life.
These animals shouldn’t be handled w/ one’s bare hands. Preferably, they shouldn’t be handled at all.

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