The red sea anemone (Actinia tenebrosa), New Zealand’s most common, is found in the intertidal zone of rocky coasts. At low tide the animal draws its tentacles into its mouth to prevent it from drying out (top image). As the tide washes over the animal, its tentacles begin to unfold (middle image). When covered by water at high tide they are expanded fully, ready to sting any unsuspecting shrimp or small fish that swims by (lower image). The Māori name for this animal is kōtore moana.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Melanie Lovell-Smith
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