Cerianthus lloydii

Geographic Range

Cerianthus lloydii can be found in the Atlantic and North Sea. They inhabite soft substrates such as sand and mud (Grzimek 1972). They can also be found in rock crevices (Banister and Campbell 1985)


Cerianthus lloydii live in soft substrates such as sand, mud and rock crevices. They can live along the coastline or deep in the ocean. They have no real boundaries as they can occur deep in the ocean or in shallow water. (Grzimek 1972)

Physical Description

Cerianthus lloydii are anywhere from a few centimeters in length, up to 40 centimeters into the substrate. Cerianthus lloydii vary in color. Their tentacles are usually a delicate brown to gray. Their tentacles can cover a circle almost 60 cm in diameter in search for prey. (Grzimek 1972) Cerianthus lloydii differ from other Cerianthus sp. in their internal anatomy and mode of growth, particularly of the septa in the gut. They live in a tube made of discharged nematocysts and sand grains. They have two groups of tentacles, one encircling the mouth, the other around the edge of the disk. (Banister and Campbell 1972)


The fertilized eggs of Cerianthus lloydii usually develop into planula larva, that settle and develop into polyps. Like other Anthozoa, there are no medusa stages in burrowing anemones. C. lloydii can also reproduce asexually by means of budding off. (Raven and Johnson 1999)

  • Parental Investment
  • no parental involvement


Cerianthus lloydii are the burrowing anemones. They burrow in sand or mud, or live in rock crevices. These burrowers arch their bodies so that their narrow foot can penetrate the surface. With closed mouths, the fluid in the gastric cavity is forced by muscular action towards the foot. The expanded foot grips the cavity wall, and the muscles of the column contract to pull the body a little way into the hole. This process is repeated many times until the anemone is in its final position with its tentacles just clear of the surface. (Banister and Campbell 1985) Cerianthus lloydii are almost never caught because they retreat into their tubes as any danger or predator approaches. (Grzimek 1972)

Food Habits

Cerianthus lloydii are carnivorous, eating hydromedusa and small crustaceans that swim into their tentacles. If kept in captivity, they may also take small pieces of meat and worms. (Grzimek 1972) Around the mouth opening there are two whorls of tentacles: in the middle are short oral tentacles and, around this, over 100 long, fringing tentacles arranged in up to four rings. (Meglitsch and Schram 1991) Like all Cnidarians, they have no anus so the indigestible food remains are expelled through the mouth. (Grzimek 1972)

Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

Cerianthus lloydii are admired for their beauty and resistance. They are found in the aquariums of many people and add color and brightness to the aquarium. Since they come in a variety of colors it is easy to see how they would be admired. (Nichols and Cooke 1971)

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

There are no real negative issues of the Cerianthus lloydii.

Conservation Status

The class Anthozoa, the class that the Cerianthus lloydii belongs to, has 6200+ species. They are very plentiful in the oceanic world. (Raven and Johnson 1999)

Other Comments

Cerianthus lloydii are rarely caught by fishing boats since they retreat into their tubes as the trawl net approaches. Divers are usually able to dig out younger and thus smaller animals from their tubes without too much laborious and time-consuming work. (Grzimek 1972)


Saul Benitez, Jr. (author), Southwestern University, Stephanie Fabritius (editor), Southwestern University.


Atlantic Ocean

the body of water between Africa, Europe, the southern ocean (above 60 degrees south latitude), and the western hemisphere. It is the second largest ocean in the world after the Pacific Ocean.

World Map


Referring to an animal that lives on or near the bottom of a body of water. Also an aquatic biome consisting of the ocean bottom below the pelagic and coastal zones. Bottom habitats in the very deepest oceans (below 9000 m) are sometimes referred to as the abyssal zone. see also oceanic vent.


the nearshore aquatic habitats near a coast, or shoreline.


animals which must use heat acquired from the environment and behavioral adaptations to regulate body temperature

native range

the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.

radial symmetry

a form of body symmetry in which the parts of an animal are arranged concentrically around a central oral/aboral axis and more than one imaginary plane through this axis results in halves that are mirror-images of each other. Examples are cnidarians (Phylum Cnidaria, jellyfish, anemones, and corals).


Banister, K., A. Campbell. 1985. The Encyclopedia of Aquatic Life. New York, NY: Facts on File, Inc.

Grzimek's, 1972. Animal Life Encyclopedia Volume1: Lower Animals. Litton World Trade Corporation.

Meglitsch, P., F. Schram. 1991. Invertebrate Zoology. New York Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Nichols, D., J. Cooke. 1971. The Oxford Book of Invertebrates. Oxford New York Toronto Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Raven, P., G. Johnson. 1999. Biology. United States of America: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.