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Latest Sea star Stories

Atlantic Ocean Gets Hit With Invasive Brittle Star Species
2012-08-20 12:37:24

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online The appearance and ecology of Atlantic coral reef habitats could be altered by yellow brittle star A study co-written by Dr. Gordon Hendler of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM) about an invasive species of brittle star, Ophiothela mirabilis, has been published online in Coral Reefs, the Journal of the International Society for Reef Studies. Growing populations have established themselves at distant points in...

Sea Star Evolution
2012-07-26 14:08:55

How quickly can new species arise? In as little as 6,000 years, according to a study of Australian sea stars. "That's unbelievably fast compared to most organisms," said Rick Grosberg, professor of evolution and ecology at UC Davis and coauthor on the paper published July 18 in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Grosberg is interested in how new species arise in the ocean. On land, groups of plants and animals can be physically isolated by mountains or rivers and then...

2011-10-18 13:14:01

Ciliary beating of Platynereis gives insights into an ancestral state of nervous system evolution As planktonic organisms the larvae of the marine annelid Platynereis swim freely in the open water. They move by activity of their cilia, thousands of tiny hair-like structures forming a band along the larval body and beating coordinately. With changing environmental conditions the larvae swim upward and downward to their appropriate water depth. Scientists of the Max Planck Institute for...

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2011-05-03 08:06:20

Janies applies sequencing, supercomputing to correct erroneous classification A team of scientists has combined embryological observations, genetic sequencing, and supercomputing to determine that a group of small disk-shaped animals that were once thought to represent a new class of animals are actually starfish that have lost the large star-shaped, adult body from their life cycle. In a paper for the journal Systematic Biology, Daniel Janies, Ph.D., a computational biologist in the...

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2009-10-28 13:10:00

Scientists have discovered that one species of starfish has a remarkable strategy to avoid overheating in the sun, BBC News reported. Experts say the ochre starfish or sea star (Pisaster ochraceus) pumps itself up with cold seawater to lower its body temperature when exposed to the sun at low tide, something scientists say is equivalent to a person drinking seven liters of water before heading into the midday sun. But the researchers warn that global climate change may drastically interfere...

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2009-06-15 17:20:00

Large numbers of starfish have been showing up in southern New England this year, blanketing the seafloor and washing up on beaches, observers say. The five-armed starfish, also known as sea stars and not actually fish, have been little studied, mostly because they have no economic value. So scientists are unsure if the boost in numbers are a cyclical phenomenon or sign of a long-term trend, The Boston Globe reported Monday. Peter Melanson, owner of the Sakonnet Oyster Co. in Little Compton,...

2009-06-03 16:49:13

Canadian zoologists have determined elevated water temperatures and high carbon dioxide concentrations can boost the growth of a species of sea star. The University of British Columbia scientists said their study is one of the first to look at the impact of ocean acidification on marine invertebrates that don't have a large calcified skeleton or external shell. The researchers said their findings challenge current assumptions about the potential impact of climate change on marine species. The...

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2009-06-01 11:18:33

New research by UBC zoologists indicates that elevated water temperatures and heightened concentrations of carbon dioxide can dramatically increase the growth rate of a keystone species of sea star. The study is one of the first to look at the impact of ocean acidification on marine invertebrates that don't have a large calcified skeleton or external shell, and challenges current assumptions about the potential impact of climate change on marine species. The findings were published online...

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2008-07-21 14:20:00

No-take marine reserves where fishing is banned can have benefits that extend beyond the exploited fishes they are specifically designed to protect, according to new evidence from Australia's Great Barrier Reef reported in the July 22nd issue of Current Biology, a Cell Press publication. Researchers have found that outbreaks of large, predatory crown-of-thorns starfish (Acanthaster planci), which can devastate coral reefs, occur less often in protected zones, although they don't yet know...

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2008-05-20 00:20:00

While studying eight Macquarie Ridge sea mountains scientists have discovered millions of starfish capturing food.The team of 19 marine scientists spotted the phenomenon while studying the region, which spans 875 miles from south of New Zealand toward Antarctica and is home to several underwater volcanoes.They had expected to discover the affects of global climate change while investigating the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, but the focus of the expedition became the underwater cameras'...


Latest Sea star Reference Libraries

Slender Starfish, Astropecten bispinosus
2012-04-19 11:01:50

The Slender Starfish (Astropecten bispinosus), is a species of sea star in the Astropectinidae family. This species lives only in the Mediterranean Sea and prefers sandy seabed near meadows of Cymodocea nodosa. It is found at depths between 8 and 400 feet. While sandy seabeds are preferred, it can also be seen on muddy and gravely mobile seabed as well. It remains buried during the day. This sea star has very narrow and high superomarginal plates with a bare area on the vertical face...

Spiny Comb-Star, Astropecten irregilaris
2012-04-19 10:57:01

The Spiny Comb-star (Astropecten irregilaris), is a species of starfish in the Astropectinidae family. It is found in the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. It lives on mobile seabed (sandy, muddy or gravely) and remains buried under sediment during the daytime. It is a very common species in all kinds of mobile seabed from 4 to 4,000 feet deep. It is active in the late afternoon and at night. Specimens from the Atlantic and Mediterranean show differences in the superomarginal...

Common Starfish (Asterias rubens)
2012-04-19 09:12:37

The Common Starfish (Asterias rubens), also known as the Common Sea Star, is the most common species of starfish found in the northeast Atlantic Ocean. It is usually found on rocky and gravelly substrate. This starfish has five arms and usually grows to between 4 and 12 inches in diameter, although some specimens have been recorded up to 21 inches across. It is typically orange or brown in color, but sometimes can be yellow, white, blue, purple or green; deep-water specimens are paler....

Astropecten platyacanthus
2012-04-19 09:07:55

Gorgonocephalus eucnemis is a species of starfish found in circumpolar marine environments in the Northern Hemisphere, particularly the Arctic Ocean and northern parts of the Atlantic Ocean as far south as the Faeroe Islands and Massachusetts Bay. It also occurs in the Pacific Ocean from the Bering Sea south to Japan and Laguna Beach, California. It is found in rocky areas with strong currents at depths down to 6,600 feet, but more commonly at 50 to 500 feet. It is also found on mud and sandy...

Astropecten platyacanthus
2012-04-19 09:00:08

Astropecten platyacanthus is a species of sea star of the family Astropectinidae. It is found only in the Mediterranean Sea living on mobile seabed (sand, mud or gravel) remaining largely buried under the sediment during the daytime. It comes out in late afternoon and is active throughout the night. It can be found at depths between 3 and 200 feet, but is more frequently found in mixed coarse sand and mud at depths of 3 to 12 feet. This starfish has narrow and high superomarginal plates,...

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Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'