Habitat: all coasts of Britain and western Europe in general Status: No conservation concerns
Reader Yuki emailed me the other day with this incredible creature that we both think everyone will love to hear about. Though I must admit, I don’t think I ever would have heard about it if it weren’t for that email! That’s the power of reader submitted creatures, so thank you to everyone who takes the time to send me an email (and even if it isn’t about a particular creature)!
So these pictures actually feature two creatures which have a symbiotic relationship, meaning both benefit by hanging out with each other. The Cloak Anemone (Adamsiacarciniopados) lives on top of the shell of the hermit crab Pagurus prideauxi. The base of the anemone envelops, or cloaks, the creature’s shell and as time goes on the Cloak Anemone secretes a chitinous layer which increases the capacity of the shell so that as the crab grows it has no need to change its home.
The anemone gets protection & extra food scraps from the hermit crab while the crab gets a formidable defense system. When the crab feels threatened it will shake, prompting the Cloak Anemone to unleash its poisonous tentacles to protect the hermit crab.
Really cool creature Yuki! I think the last picture looks like the Hermit Crab partied a little too hard and got some silly string stuck all over it.
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I have a confession: I love animals. Join me and the rest of the Featured Creature community as we learn about the weirdest, coolest, and craziest animals out there. Including your dog, Mr. Scrufflebutt (if you submit him!).