8-2-2006 My two mouth Anemone showed signs of splitting so on that day I started to take pictures of the process. I was so happy that it stayed right out front of the tank where it has always lived to do this. It stayed bubbled the whole time during this split and was fun to sit and watch it over the 4 hour period that it took for it to complete the split. I will explain each set of pictures as to just what you are looking at as you look at them so that you know just what you are seeing. I have also made a video of the split and will have it uploaded soon for you to enjoy. So, lets go look at the perfect split of the Two Mouth Rose.
The first picture was taken way before the split to show you what it looked like for many months. It was purchased bleached and very sick and I was able to save it.
The picture below was taken 2 days before the split when I was watching it closely as I new it was starting to consider dividing. I found it very exciting to see the inside of one of it's tentacles and was able to capture this picture of it.
Below is a picture of it's two mouths and I drew a line where the split took place.
Below is a picture taken the morning of the split Notice the foot on the bottom right that is now stretched over the rock to the right. The top of the foot in the back of the anemone has stretched to a rock that is behind the anemone and up high.
Here is a picture of it as it elongates over two rocks with it's foot. It is now stretching itself over two rocks with it's foot.
Now the start of the split. You can see the stretching of both mouths in the first two pictures, they have stretched left to right. When the two mouths rip reached each other the right side of the Anemone pulled apart as seen in picture 3 and 4 in the group below. On picture # 4 you can see the insides of the anemone, this was between the mouths of the Anemone. It is now raw and open to the environment.
The left side was still in tact when these pictures were taken. This stage took around 2 hours to accomplish.
Below I have sped up the process for you a bit as I took over 200 pictures as this split happened but won't bore you with them all
The pictures below are amazing. You can see that the foot is done splitting and now all that is left is part of it's body. I sat and watched this process with the camera on a tripod clicking away ever 4 seconds to catch it all. It was amazing to actually see it yanking and pulling itself apart. It was incredible to see so closely. I have witnessed many splits but not at close range like this one. Imagine it pulling from both ends as you look at them. You can see that the top part of the anemone has now moved up on the back rock to get a better foot hold while the bottom one stayed in place where it started the split.
In the pictures below the final steps are taking place. It quivered and pulled slowly and it started to look like a piece of shredded chicken. Amazing to watch. It was around the size of a pencil lead at this time.
Below I wanted to add several more pictures of this point as it was interesting to watch. It got thinner by the second and these pictures are moments from it finally pulling apart.
More pictures a few seconds from the above pictures. Below In the second picture you can see what I was referring to as to the shredded chicken look.
Below, more pictures of the process. Getting closer to living on there own. Now the two halves are about 5 inches apart and are determined to get on with there own lives
The pictures below are almost the end of the split. The shred left between them is now several hairs thick in the right picture.
All of this is happening in second increments not minutes so I was clicking away as it ripped apart. Below it is almost complete
And the separate anemones are now on their own. Seconds after the above group it popped loose in the picture on the right.
Below they are now free of each other. The one in the back higher up then moved up the back rock and down the back of the tank to heal. The one out front that stayed put decided to let go of it's rock and float so it was pulled from the tank and placed in a 15 gallon tank to heal and float to it's hearts content until it decides to grab hold of something and heal. The first picture left below is the top Anemone and right is a few seconds later as it drew itself together at the mouth. Picture bottom right are the two Anemones just after completing the split and sitting on there own before they both moved.
Since the top half moved to the back of the tank I am unable to get pictures of it. But the other half is in a smaller tank and I took some pictures of its mouth and also the foot just after it was moved. These pictures were taken the morning after the split as I turned the lights out and let it rest during the night.
Below are pictures of them still in the 125 gallon. As you can see the back higher up anemone has moved to the back of the tank within minutes of the split.
Now the bottom Anemone has turned loose and is floating around the tank. It was gathered up in a cup and placed in a quarantine tank to float as long as it wants and to attach when ready. (it has now attached 2 days after the split)
I hope you have enjoyed seeing the split and it helps you to know what to expect from yours should it decide to do the same. I did the mandatory water change the next morning totaling 35 gallons of RO water and Instant Ocean salt. Filters were removed and scrubbed out and replaced, skimmer cleaned and replaced. All is well with the world