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Phylum Cnidaria > Class Anthozoa > Subclass Zoantharia/Hexacorallia > Order Actiniaria
Petal-mouthed mangrove anemone
Stephensonactis ornata
Family Haliactiidae
updated Nov 2019

Where seen? This beautiful anemone with 'petals' around its mouth is sometimes seen on our Northern shores. Can be seen in large numbers in very soft silty mudflats near mangroves. A few individuals may be seen in other silty sandy shores near freshwater inputs.

Features: Diameter with tentacles expanded 3-6cm. Tentacles many, with pointed tips, generally pale white to beige, some with broad, diffuse bands. One upper ring of longer, thicker tentacles. Below, another ring of many shorter, thinner tentacles. Oral disk often with darker margin. Mouth ringed with pale petal-like structures. Body column may be pale or dark, is smooth with fine white stripes. It can tuck its tentacles into its body column.

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Nov 03

Mouth ringed with petal-like structures.

Pasir Ris Park, Dec 08

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Nov 03

Sembawang, Dec 08

Woodlands, Jul 08

Petal-mouthed mangrove anemones on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr

Grateful thanks to Prof Daphne Fautin for identifiying this anemone.


  • D. G. Fautin, R. Tan, N. W. L. Yap, Tan S. H., A. Crowther, R. Goodwill, K. Sanpanich & Tay Y. C. Sea anemones (Cnidaria: Actiniaria) of Singapore: shallow water species known also from the Indian subcontinent. 10 July 2015 The Comprehensive Marine Biodiversity Survey: Johor Straits International Workshop (2012) The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 2015 Supplement No. 31, Pp. 44-59.
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