A fluorescent green flower anemone (Epicystis crucifer) releasing sperm into the water column of an aquarium at the lab of Coral Morphologic in Miami.
On May 24th we observed this anemone spawning in our lab and filmed the event. This anemone released sperm continuously for nearly 30 minutes. Several other nearby flower anemones released significantly smaller amounts of gametes.
This was the second time we have witnessed the spawning event at our lab this spring, this anemone was in an aquarium set up for their aquaculture, while we observed our outdoor anemones spawning on April 12th. The reproductive cycle of the flower anemones seem to be controlled by the changes of the seasons. In 2009 we witnessed them giving live birth on and around the summer solstice, but we never saw the spawning event. You can read more about the 2009 birthing event and the subsequent baby anemones here:
This particular flower anemone can be seen in Lynette Wallworth's Full-Dome Cinema feature film 'Coral Rekindling Venus' opening at select planetariums world-wide on June 5th, 2012.
Video, Aquarium + Original Soundtrack: Coral Morphologic
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