The Cowardly Anemone, Stomphia didemon, is a large deep sea anemone that is found in the Eastern North Pacific (Alaska south to Washington State), often on sand/gravel bottoms at depths of 80-100 m (Cowles 2004
Stomphia didemon has an unusual defensive response to certain predatory sea stars, and that is to wriggle free of its attachment, flex its body, and swim away. The "swimming" is more of a thrashing back-and-forth, takes several moments to occur, and moves the sea anemone only a short distance. Nonetheless, it is quite effective. To find out which other sea-star species elicit the response, what phylogenetic or other affinities they may have, and to learn about other features of the defensive manouvre, go to A SNAIL'S ODYSSEY. Once in the sea-anemone defenses section, scroll down to the section on "Swimming".
Note Author: Tom Carefoot, Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia