Hopkins Marine Station Student Paper

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(full paper is archived in the Miller Library)

Title: The symbiotic relationship between the hermit crab Pagurus samuelis (Arthropoda: Decapoda) and the sea anemones Anthopleura elegantissima and A. xanthogrammica (Cnidaria: Actinaria)
Student Author(s): Broughton, Patricia S.
Faculty Advisor(s): Baxter, Chuck
Pages: 21
Location: Final Papers Biology 175H
Date: June 1975
Keywords: sea anemones
Abstract: The hermit crab Pagurus samuelis is able to develop a relationship with the sea anemones Anthopleura elegantissima and A. xanthogrammica such that the crab is able to interact with the column, tentacles and oral disc of the anemome without being stung by the nematocysts. The crab steals the anemone's food from its grastric cavity, picks up detritus from the column and tentacles, and eats either anemone tissue or mucus. The protection against nematocysts is probably due to the acquisition of anemone mucus on the crab's appendages so that the anemone responds to the crab as it would respond to its own tissue.