How long can a sea pen live?

100 years old
Sea pens are a type of octocoral, or soft coral, which are related to jellyfish and anemones. They may not get as much love as their glamorous cousins, the reef-building hard corals, but sea pens are fascinating creatures that can live to be 100 years old, glow in the dark and live in the soft sediments of Puget Sound.

Is Pennatula aquatic?

Sea pen, any of the 300 species of the order Pennatulacea, colonial invertebrate marine animals of the class Anthozoa (phylum Cnidaria). The name sea pen derives from their resemblance to quill pens. They occur in shallow and deep waters from polar seas to the tropics.

Why Pennatula is called sea pen?

Although named after their feather-like appearance reminiscent of antique quill pens, only sea pen species belonging to the suborder Subselliflorae live up to the comparison.

Are sea pen endangered?

In fact, sea pen and burrowing megafauna communities have been classified as “threatened and/or declining habitat” (OSPAR, 2004).

Can sea pens move?

Sea pens are adapted for life on soft sea bottoms. Here, they can dig into the ground for support. They retract completely into the soft ground when alarmed or at low tide. It is said that they can move along the bottom by looping their bodies.

How much does a sea pen cost?

The cost for this system starts at $12,000. SeaPen is available for purchase direct from Solstice Docking Solutions or through its dealer network.

Who is known as sea pen?

Sea pens are the marine cnidarians belonging to the order Pennatulacea. They live in the colony. They are named after their feather-like appearance. They belong to the genus Pennatula. They are found in the gulf of Alaska.

What eats a sea pen?

Like all other corals, sea pens are filter feeders, capturing plankton and detritus (dead plant and animal matter) in their tentacles to eat. The main predators of sea pens are nudibranchs (sea slugs) as juveniles and sea stars as adults.

Why is sea pen important?

As a consequence, sea pens are regarded as an important indicator of the quality of mud habitats and associated communities (Macdonald et al., 1996), relevant to environmental legislation such as the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD; 2008/56/EC).

Are sea pens edible?

A few sea pens may harbour zooxanthellae (symbiotic algae) inside their bodies. These carry out photosynthesis and may contribute nutrients to the host polyp. But most gather edible bits from the water.

Do sea pens have predators?

They live at many depths from shallow waters down to deep seas in tropical and temperate waters worldwide. Their major predators are nudibranchs and sea stars, some of which feed exclusively on sea pens. During the daylight hours Sea Pens usually bury themselves into the sand, and come out at night to capture plankton.

What does a sea pen do?

Sea pens are a type of octocoral, named for the eight stinging tentacles they use to capture plankton (tiny floating plants and animals) to feed themselves. The basic unit of a sea pen, like other corals, is a polyp, which consists of a sac-like body cavity enclosed by a mouth and surrounded by a ring of tentacles.

How tall is a pennatula phosphorea sea pen?

Pennatula phosphorea is a sea pen forming erect colonies of up to 40 cm tall. Swollen with water, they are fleshy and slightly bent over the surface. The bulbous stalk embedded in sediments is only visible in its upper part. Above the surface, a 25 cm tall rachis have numerous alternate opposite branches on each side of the central axis.

What kind of habitat does a pen Pennatula live in?

This is a very common inhabitant on sandy or muddy substrate, on depths ranging from 10 to 100 meters. It is most frequent deeper than 20 meters.

How many families are in the order Pennatulacea?

There are 16 families within the order Pennatulacea; they are thought to have a cosmopolitan distribution in tropical and temperate waters worldwide. Sea pens are grouped with the octocorals (soft corals ), together with sea whips or gorgonians.

What makes a sea pen different from other octocorals?

Unlike other octocorals, however, a sea pen’s polyps are specialized to specific functions: a single polyp develops into a rigid, erect stalk (the rachis) and loses its tentacles, forming a bulbous “root” or peduncle at its base.