Sea anemones live attached to the rocks, catching plankton and tiny animals from the water with their stinging tentacles. They can be found in rock pools around the low tide mark, sometimes in small groups. The Dahlia Anemone has a squat, jelly-like 'body' which is warty-looking and often covered with pieces of gravel and broken shell. It has fairly short, thick tentacles which are retracted when disturbed or when uncovered by the falling tide.
How to identify
Distinguished from other anemones by the banded tentacles and the warty, gravelly 'body'. Very variable in colour, 'body' often blue or green with blotches of brown or red. Tentacles paler, with bands of darker colour.
Where to find it
On rocky shores around all our coasts.
When to find it
How can people help
Sea anemones may be a familiar sight when rock-pooling, but our seas and coastline are in need of protection if we are to keep our marine wildlife healthy. The Wildlife Trusts are working with fishermen, researchers, politicians and local people towards a vision of 'Living Seas', where marine wildlife thrives. This work has recently had a massive boost with the passing of the Marine Bill, promising sustainable development of the UK's marine environment. Do your bit for our Living Seas by supporting your local Wildlife Trust.