The Beautiful and Amazing Sea Star

A list of some popular species of sea star.

Sea stars, or popularly called starfish, are from the phylum Echinodermata and falls under the class Asteroidea. They have five arms and display a seemingly radial symmetry. Sea stars have a movable skeleton that aids them in moving and hunting for preys that include: oysters and clams. One major characteristic of sea star is that they can regenerate lost appendages. However, to produce a new sea star, the arm must be connected to any part of the central disk.

Currently, there are about 1,800 known species of sea star that inhabit all oceans. Majority of sea star species are found in the tropical-temperate waters around the Indo-Pacific regions. Other species live along the cold-temperate water of the North Pacific.

Below is a list of popular sea star species:

Blue Sea Star

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It is the most common species amongst sea stars. They live in coral reefs along shallow waters of the Indo-Pacific Region and around the Northern part of Australia. They are blue in color but others bear red or purplish spots along each of its arms. Blue Sea Stars (Linckia laevigata) can reach 30 cm in diameter with 5 tubular arms that are stretched out and typically have short, and yellowish tube feet. Known for its amazing regenerative powers, these creatures can also reproduce asexually and are excellent nocturnal hunters.

Eleven-armed sea star

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The Eleven-armed sea star (Coscinasterias calamaria), is widespread to New Zealand and the biggest sea star in southern Australia. They are found mostly hiding in rocks in search of algae during low tides. A beautiful sea star, it is normally blue in color and some individuals bear tints of orange, green, red, gray, cream and white. Although called the Eleven-armed sea star, it can have 7 to 14 arms that can reach up to 30 cm. in diameter. It can reproduce itself by self division– has the ability to generate even an arm into a new individual. Some Eleven-armed sea stars are known to own a set of arms at varying lengths that are capable to generate to its original length.

Spiny Cushion Star

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The Spiny Cushion Star (Culcita schmideliana) is a large species of sea star that doesn’t have arms and are found mostly in Indian Ocean; from eastern Africa to Malaysia. It usually grows up to 10 inches in diameter and may come in different colors.

Crown-of-Thorns Starfish

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Next to the Giant Sun star, the Crown-of-Thorns starfish (Acanthaster planci) is the second largest species of sea star found mostly in the Great Barrier Reef of Australia, in the Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean and in the Red Sea. They are solitary animals dwelling in coral reefs and seabed that feeds upon coral polyps using their tube feet. Normally, Crown-of-Thorns starfish have 12 to 19 arms and can grow up to 40 cm. across. Like other sea stars, it is capable of self- regeneration from a battered limb to full sized.

Common Sea Star

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This species of sea star is widespread in on starfish in Arctic Norway, the north-east Atlantic and in southern Portugal. They inhibit in shell abundant gravel and rock. Common starfish (Asterias forbesi) colors include: orange, violet or pale brown. They have five arms and is normally 10-30cm (4-12in) across. Some species even grow up to can reach a length of up to 50cm (20in) in diameter.

Giant Sea Star

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This species of sea star is commonly found living in rocky sea shores and in seabed along the western shore lines of North America from Southern California to British Columbia. Giant sea stars (Pisaster giganteus) are large species that can grow up to 60 cm. in diameter and come in different colors such as: red, brown or purple. They can live up to 20 years.

Bat Sea Star

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Bat Sea Star (Asterina miniata)displays a webbed 5-sided radial symmetry and appears like a bat’s wing. They are found living among rocks and sand bottoms; in the low-tide line up to 290 meters. Bat sea star are abundant from Alaska to Baja California. They can have varying coloration from red, orange, yellow, brown, green, gray and purple. They can grow up to 8 inches in size.

35 thoughts on “The Beautiful and Amazing Sea Star

  1. sayitnessie.com

    Starfish is really the star of the ocean. Pretty to look at. But I'm still not comfortable being near them.. huhuhuh

  2. markpogi

    Wow! These are another addition to one's knowledge on starfish. The Spiny Cushion Star looked more like a rock to me. 😀

  3. Mary Anne Velasco

    Star fish are beautiful creatures of the sea. I don't like touching them though. i like their colors! I have seen loads of them in beaches in Davao City. 🙂

  4. Ralph Marcuss Manarang

    Abang yung bilog pala ay tinatawag na star. ALin ba dito sir yung kaya dito si Patrick ng spongebob.

  5. Justin Buenagua

    Cool!! I think star fishes are amazing creatures.. but once you go deeper, their appearance starts to grow crazy.. they become freaky creatures.. 🙂

  6. Jo-Ann

    My students will love this starfish information. Thanks, I will have some smart thing to say on our next meeting. Our topic is all about asexual reproduction I am thinking on how to relate this on our topic.

  7. nanardx zee

    Another interesting post here, when I was still a kid i was always interested with almost anything i find in the sea especially star fishes!

  8. Ellen Bernardino

    The sea stars are so nice to look at because of their varied colors and shapes, although its nice also if we could touch them but they are sensitive to touch and temperature.

  9. Social Shopper Mom

    Ang ganda ng Giant Sea Star, it looks like a fashion accessory! Haha. It's amazing that they can live up to 20 years!

  10. MaryJane Tauyan

    speaking of this! just got home from the KLCC aquaria and saw some of this also. THey are cute and all but I wont touch it still though. hehe xx

  11. YANI

    Ive seen some of them already in the flesh while snorkeling 🙂 Can;t wait for another day to be with these amazing creatures again.

  12. Breathe. Babble

    Cool! Reading your post is like reading a science book with illustrations of different types of star fish. Keep it up!

  13. special education philippines

    There is no denying that crown of thorns are an amazing sight but I once dove with a dive master who almost died after being pricked by a crown of thorn. That summer we volunteered as divers just to remove these sea stars who were eating corals and considered as pests. It also has to be buried properly so as not to harm human beings. So if you see this sea star in the water, it is best to swim away from it and alert the coast guard right away.

  14. jsncruz

    I find it slightly ironic that one of the specimens here does not look like a star, but more of a moon 🙂 I guess classifications are classifications!

  15. Jerome Ibuyan

    I had a quick trip under the sea hehe. Alright, I learned again new today, there's a star fish which even look like a star- the Spiny Cushion Star (Culcita schmideliana). =)

  16. Enna Nospmoht

    I always love the color blue and I love the Blue Sea Star (Linckia laevigata)it attracts me very much. It is just so good in the eye.

  17. Nova Hedges

    isn't that so awesome to know the wonderful creatures we have? that's why we need to help preserve them for the next generations

  18. lencilicious

    Ang dami palang species ng star fish. All of them have unique characteristics that made them amazing to look at.

  19. betchai

    haha, i see a lot of giant sea stars here and have photographs of them, yet I do not know they are called giant sea stars, i only call them sea stars 🙂 the bat sea star is common here too, and the blue sea star is what i always see in the Philippines 🙂 i still have to see that crown of thorns. another great informative post, Donald.

  20. Teresa Martinez

    The spiny cushion star doesn't look much like a star so I wouldn't even know it falls under this category if I did not read this article.

  21. mhie@travelentz

    I am fascinated with all sea star.I am happy I could see it in aquarium kasi di ako marunong mag swim.lol

  22. Chubskulit Rose

    I pretty much seen a lot of this since I grew up in a coastal area, I think the unusual one for me is the crown of thorns starfish.

    Dito na lang ako magcocomment for today's comex, I already commented on the other one.

  23. Pepper Tan

    My daughter has always been fascinated by starfish. Sadly, I don't share her enthusiasm :). I'll show her this post when she comes home from school later today.

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