MBARI’s remotely operated vehicle photographed this “flytrap anemone” about 1,900 meters (6,200 feet) below the sea surface during a dive on Davidson Seamount. Marine biologists have not been able to determine the exact genus or species of this animal, but they have placed it in the family Hormathiidae. We often see flytrap anemones up to 30 cm (one foot) across growing on exposed rock outcrops on seamounts and deep sea ridges, where currents are relatively strong. Although some scientists have suggested that flytrap anemones eat bits of debris carried on the ocean currents, their body shape suggests that they feed on small animals, such as shrimp, that happen to swim by. Flytrap anemones were recently discovered to release bioluminescent slime when disturbed.

MBARI’s remotely operated vehicle photographed this “flytrap anemone” about 1,900 meters (6,200 feet) below the sea surface during a dive on Davidson Seamount. Marine biologists have not been able to determine the exact genus or species of this animal, but they have placed it in the family Hormathiidae. We often see flytrap anemones up to 30 cm (one foot) across growing on exposed rock outcrops on seamounts and deep sea ridges, where currents are relatively strong. Although some scientists have suggested that flytrap anemones eat bits of debris carried on the ocean currents, their body shape suggests that they feed on small animals, such as shrimp, that happen to swim by. Flytrap anemones were recently discovered to release bioluminescent slime when disturbed.