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Palythoa mizigama


Copyright Yuka Irei; CC-BY 4.0

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Courtesy of the author Yuka Irei, Dr. James Davis Reimer, Japan (© by Yuka Irei, Dr. Frederic Sinniger, and Dr. James Davis Reimer") Image detail


Palythoa mizigama 
Palythoa Mizigama 
Family tree:
Animalia (Kingdom) > Cnidaria (Phylum) > Anthozoa (Class) > Zoantharia (Order) > Sphenopidae (Family) > Palythoa (Genus) > mizigama (Species) 
Initial determination:
Irei, Sinniger & Reimer, 2015 
Giappone, Okinawa 
Sea depth:
4 - 11 Meter 
bis zu 1cm 
°C - 23°C 
azooxanthellat, nonphotosynthetic, Plancton 
There are no reports available yet that this animal has already been kept in captivity successfully 
Possible to breed 
Has a poison harmful to health 
Not evaluated 
Red List:
Not evaluated (NE) 
Related species at
Catalog of Life
  • Palythoa anthoplax
  • Palythoa australiae
  • Palythoa capensis
  • Palythoa caribbaeorum
  • Palythoa complanata
  • Palythoa dartevellei
  • Palythoa densa
  • Palythoa durbanensis
More related species
in this lexicon
Last edit:
2019-10-19 13:49:56 

Captive breeding / propagation

The offspring of Palythoa mizigama are possible. Unfortunately, the number of offspring is not large enough to cover the demand of the trade. If you are interested in Palythoa mizigama, please ask your dealer for offspring. If you already own Palythoa mizigama, try breeding yourself. This will help to improve the availability of offspring in the trade and to conserve natural stocks.


This is a general hint!
Palythoa mizigama has a harmful toxin.
As a rule, animals with a harmful poison do not pose any danger in normal Aquarieaner everyday life. Read the following husbandry information and comments from aquarists who already keep Palythoa mizigama in their aquarium to get a better picture about the possible danger. However, please be careful when using Palythoa mizigama. Every human reacts differently to poisons.
If you suspect that you have come into contact with the poison, please contact your doctor or the poison emergency call.
The phone number of the poison emergency call can be found here:
Overview Worldwide:

Translated with


New encrusting anemone

Research primarily conducted in Okinawa, Japan, by graduate student Yuka Irei and associate professor James Davis Reimer from the University of the Ryukyus, along with Dr. Frederic Sinniger from JAMSTEC, has found two new species of encrusting anemones, or colonial zoantharians, in unexpected locations. The study was published in the open access journal ZooKeys.

The two species belong to the genus Palythoa, which is commonly found on shallow coral reefs in subtropical and tropical waters worldwide. Surprisingly, the two new species were found living in cracks and caves in the reefs, and do not have zooxanthellae, unlike almost other known Palythoa species. Zooxanthellae are symbiotic, photosynthetic, single-celled algae that can provide host species with energy from the sun.
Species of Palythoa are sometimes the dominant benthic organism on shallow coral reefs, and are also common in the pet trade. Their success may in part be due to their ability to host zooxanthellae while also being efficient planktonivores, allowing them to live in a wide variety of coral reef conditions from shallow reef flats to steep and deep reef slopes. However, specimens first found by Irei and Sinniger from shallow caves and cracks in Okinawa and New Caledonia appeared to be unique in their habitat preference. Additionally, analyses showed these specimens lacked zooxanthellae.
"One of the species is described from just in front of a landfilled reef coastline on Okinawa Island and it is encouraging to see that there is still some unknown biodiversity just in front of our door," commented Sinniger.
"At first, we were surprised at the discovery of specimens, and thought we had one undescribed and unusual species on our hands," said Irei, "but we were even more surprised when DNA analyses showed clearly that there were two different species." Further research by Irei and Reimer in Okinawa revealed additional minor morphological differences between the two species. The new study formally describes these new specimens as two species.
"These two species are morphologically very similar," stated Reimer, "with long tentacles to acquire plankton from the water column, and polyps that are curved towards the entrances of cracks or caves for better access to their food source." While genetically distinct, each species appears to have evolved very similar features to adapt to its life in the dark. "These two species provide an excellent example of parallel evolution, as each evolved independently from each other," added Irei. The only reliable way to tell the two species apart asides from DNA are the patterns and markings on their tentacles.
Palythoa species are usually colonial, often forming large groups with many polyps. They are known from coral reef environments worldwide, and many species have been shown to contain the palytoxin, a lethal toxin named after the genus. It is not known if the two new species contain toxin.
Story Source:
The above story is based on materials provided by Pensoft Publishers. The original story is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
Journal Reference:
Yuka Irei, Frederic Sinniger, James Davis Reimer. Descriptions of two azooxanthellate Palythoa species (Subclass Hexacorallia, Order Zoantharia) from the Ryukyu Archipelago, southern Japan. ZooKeys, 2015; 478: 1 DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.478.8512




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