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Sea Anemone

figure 1: the sea anemone, sublime and strange

figure 1: clustered sea anemones, sublime and strange

Sea anemones (order Actiniaria) are marine predators named after the terrestrial anemone (a member of the Buttercup family).  When we think of sea anemones, we typically recall their beauty, their stinging poison, and the symbiotic relationship of certain species with clownfish, which are immune to the anemone’s neurotoxin.

 The internal anatomy of  a sea anemone is fairly simple, but the exterior– particularly the waving, colorful tentacles– is famously alien and even sublime in appearance, as in figure 1, above.

 Yet life teaches us that  for every instance of the sublime on earth, there is a corresponding example of the profane, and the sea anemone aptly demonstrates this truth (see figure 2, below).

 

figure 3: the sea anemone, in all of its earthy profanity.

figure 2: the sea anemone, in all its profane glory.

 

Cf.   http://www.actiniaria.com/
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_anemone

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